'I want to play for the Royal Family and the Prime Minister can come along too' (From Borehamwood Times)
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Pupil at Haberdashers' Aske's in Elstree youngest to received degree equivalent diploma
A modern day Mozart has become the youngest person ever to win a degree-equivalent music diploma.
Curtis Elton, nine, has just been awarded an ATCL by Trinity College London, the equivalent to the first year of a degree, for his piano playing.
The pupil at Haberdashers’ Aske’s Boy’s School in Butterfly Lane in Elstree impressed examiners with his 30 minute recital of pieces by Bach, Schubert and Mozart.
His mother Hayley Elton, 40, who is herself a concert pianist, is very happy at her son’s success.
She said: “I’m so proud of him. This is a truly incredible achievement.
“He’s only nine, yet he’s at the level expected of someone more than twice his age.
“I haven’t pressured him at all; you can’t make a child do anything he doesn’t want to do.
“He loved listening to me play when he was a baby, and started playing as soon as he was able.
“He really enjoys playing and loves how fast his fingers go on the keys.”
The pint-sized prodigy shot to fame last year when he was one of the youngest people in the country to pass a Grade Eight exam in piano.
He has since been nominated for a Nickelodeon Fruit Shoot skills award for the best rising star; and asked to take part in master classes at the Royal College of Music with world renowned conductor Benjamin Zander, who was "blown away" by his talent.
Curtis, who lives in Whetsone, was very proud and pleased to have gained the diploma.
He said: “I have a gown now made especially for me by Ede and Ravenscroft, who make clothes for the Royal Family, and a certificate too.
“I was very confident and excited during the exam, I wasn’t scared at all.”
The mother and son have just recorded their first album together, which will be released on November 4.
Mrs Elton said: “It’s called Day Dreams and the music on it is lovely, it really fits the title.
“We have always enjoyed playing together and wanted to collaborate on a project together that we’ll be able to remember for years to come.”
Curtis said he was excited about releasing the album.
He added: “I want to be a concert pianist when I grow up. I want to play for the Royal Family and the Prime Minister can come along too.”
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