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This 5-Year-Old Piano Whiz From Vancouver Is About To Play New York’s Carnegie Hall
March 15, 2013
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The old joke goes, a couple of tourists ask a violinist, "Excuse me, how do you get to Carnegie Hall?" The answer: practice!

Well, 5-year-old Ryan Wang of West Vancouver has only been playing piano for a year-and-a-half, but the practice has paid off.

He's going to play New York's famous Carnegie Hall with a lineup of young musical prodigies.

When he was two, Ryan's mom noticed he was singing the music from a recital they went to. In fact, his mom says "he sang before he talked."

So, Ryan's mom put him in a music program for toddlers and then last year, decided to enroll him in music lessons.

"I was thinking four years is so young, right? You cannot even read the notes," she told the Vancouver Sun.

But Ryan picked it up fast - mastering an 18 page concertos composed for kids twice his age.

Recently, he finished second at the American Protégé Piano and Strings International Competition.

And this weekend, he's off to New York. He's also due to appear with the Shanghai Symphony Orchestra and perform at the Fazioli Pianoforti concert hall in Italy.

He's perform at the Kay Meek Theatre in West Vancouver on June 9, with all the proceeds going to the Sarah MacLachlan School of Music.

Along with his musical talent, Ryan is unflappable. According to his mom, when it comes to his performances "I get more nervous than he does."

And she says she doesn't push Ryan - he just enjoys playing, singing and dancing. He has a passion for music, she told CBC Vancouver.

So, how does Ryan explain his ability? "Music is in my head," he said.

Incredibly, he isn't the youngest person to perform at Carnegie Hall.

According to Carnegie Hall historians, on April 19, 1900, four-year-old Lolita Val de Cabrera Gainsborg played piano in Carnegie Chamber Music Hall.

Last year, another Vancouver youngster, Shuqi Li, played Carnegie Hall as well. She was six at the time. You can watch her story here.

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