Will Hansen has perfect pitch. The 23-year-old pianist also has an extraordinary ability to calculate dates in his head. Although he is on the spectrum of autism, Will is extremely outgoing and yearns to connect with others.
“Will loves feeling like he has a place in the world where he belongs,” says his mother, Mellen. “A place among his peers.” Being part of Everybody Is a Star has been extremely positive for Will, especially the music events, including performing with peers at professional sports events. In 2017, the Warriors team presented Will with an award for special achievement. “It’s a real source of pride for him,” said Mellon. “So is his video.” Will dances to his video, and proudly shows it to friends.
Will performs with the Woodlanders, a band of special needs musicians. “When he feels part of a group of peers,” his mother explains. “He’s never better.”
Warm and loving, Will is always reaching out in friendship. If Will learns your birthday, he will correctly announce which day of the week your next birthday will fall. He will also remember it and sing Happy Birthday if he sees you that day. “Will is the life of any party,” says his mother. “He meets the world with open arms and bright eyes.”