Avid to Showcase Latest Accessibility Advances in Three Events at NAMM 2020

By in Music Creation, Notation, Pro Mixing

Avid continues its commitment to bring visually impaired users to the audio and music creation party. We plan to share our latest developments in three separate presentations at the 2020 NAMM Show. Two of these will take place on the Avid Mainstage at stand #15502 in the North Hall and we will also reprise our action-packed panel as part of the TEC Tracks presentations. The events and locations are as follows:


  • Accessible Pro Tools and Sibelius on the Mainstage: (Stand #15502 North Hall.  Saturday January 18that 5:00 PM and Sunday, January 19th at 3:30 PM.
  • NAMM Pro Accessibility Panel:  Hall A6, Hilton Anaheim, 4th Floor.  Sunday, January 19th from 11:00 AM to 12:50 PM as part of the TEC Tracks presentations.

On the Avid Stage, you will see what a pair of our leading customers can do with Pro Tools and Sibelius without eyesight. Both Slau Halatyn and Chi Kim, long-time visually impaired advisors and testers of Pro Tools and Sibelius, are creating music everyday using these tools, and without sighted assistance. They are not just skimming the surfaces of Pro Tools and Sibelius; they are working with Pro Tools | HDX systems in professional studios and teaching at leading universities. Both have been instrumental in driving accessible functionality into Avid products.

Ed Gray and Slau Halatyn, Owner, BeSharp Studio

Timothy Adnitt, Director, Music Production, Native Instruments

The mainstage events will be 45-minute panel discussions that provide a look at the excitement that is going on in accessible development for Sibelius and Pro Tools. The usability of Sibelius by visually impaired users has improved dramatically in the past year thanks to a close collaboration with Berklee College of Music. We’ll hear from Sam Butler, Head of Product Management for Sibelius and Chi Kim, Associate Professor of Music at Berklee, about our recent collaboration and plans for the future. Then both will dive into some real-time score creation showing off the latest ways that visually impaired users can take full advantage of this award-winning music composition and notation solution from Avid. Next up will be Slau Halatyn, owner of BeSharp Studios in New York City and a renowned thought leader on usability of Pro Tools by the visually impaired. Slau, together with a team of beta testers and advisors, work year-round to help Avid prioritize our accessibility fixes and improvements and Slau is one of the most enthusiastic and engaging presenters of the latest advances. We’re grateful for the contributions that Chi and Slau continue to make to our ongoing efforts and the best is yet to come.

Sam Butler, Head of Product Management for Sibelius has worked with Berklee College of music to turbocharge its accessibility

Rob Arbittier is a musician, producer and Grammy-recognized engineer. He is also a coder and has been a pioneer in the world of non-visual technology for several decades, dedicating much of his life and career to making music and audio technology accessible for artists including Stevie Wonder, Ray Charles and many others.

Along with the Avid main stage presentations comes the third annual NAMM Pro Accessibility Panel, where Avid joins forces with Native Instruments and with accessibility leaders  from Berklee College of Music,  I See Music (a leading provider of audio technology training for the blind and adaptive technology services), and other presenters in an informal panel discussion with demonstrations of the latest in accessibility for music creation. This nearly two-hour event promises to move quickly and will cover the following:


  • Why developers and manufacturers should pursue accessibility and how to tackle it (Timothy Adnitt, Director, Music Production, Native Instruments)
  • Expert demonstrations of leading accessible music creation tools including Avid Pro Tools and Sibelius, Native Instruments Komplete Kontrol, Flo Tools and more (Slau Halatyn, Owner, BeSharp Studios and Chi Kim, Associate Professor, Berklee College of Music)
  • Training and education for visually impaired musicians (Byron Harden, Owner, I See Music)
  • Teaching music creation in academic settings (Chi Kim)
  • Resources for developers and companies beginning the accessibility journey (Ed Gray, Director, Partnering Programs, Avid)
  • New for 2020:  How I worked with Stevie Wonder and Ray Charles to bring music creation to their worlds (Rob Arbittier, Owner, Noisy Neighbors Productions)

Chi Kim, Associate Professor, Berklee College of Music

Byron Harden, Head of I See Music

We look forward to welcoming you to these events and hope you share our enthusiasm for the good that accessible development accomplishes and the new opportunities that it can offer your business.

Make your mark with Pro Tools

Create music or sound for film/TV and connect with a premier network of artists, producers, and mixers around the world.

Express yourself with Sibelius

Create beautiful, captivating scores more quickly than ever before with the world’s best selling notation software.

As Director, Partnering Programs at Avid, Ed Gray and his team deliver technical and marketing programs that connect Avid Customers with the best partner products for media creation in the world.