Back in August, Alicia turned up a video of a five-year-old in Hong Kong playing the piano so outrageously well that many viewers justifiably asked if the video was fake. Go watch it again. It truly is unbelievable.
The video’s authenticity has since been confirmed, which means the kid behind the keys really is as amazing as he looks. The four-minute clip has racked up more than 2 million viewers, a number that will only likely increase thanks to this bit of recent publicity.
Tsung Tsung, now all of six years old, appeared on Ellen for a little chat on Monday. He tells her his favorite composer is Mozart, who was himself a child prodigy. After nearly three minutes of banter, Tsung Tsung shows off his savant-like talent while performing Rimsky-Korsakov’s Flight of the Bumblebee. The audience gives him a deserved standing ovation.
Music teachers say it usually takes a pupil four to five years to reach grade five, while an outstanding student may accelerate to this level in two or three years.
Wilson Chu, consultant of the Vienna Music Examination Board, who has seen local children learning instruments at age two due to parental pressure, warned against hot-housing, saying students cannot learn effectively before the age of four.
“Putting too much pressure on them could backfire,” he said, adding that it is better for children to play an instrument for a few years before sitting exams.