Mini musical maestro Kieran Ragan has already impressed his family, teachers and schoolfriends with his multiple tuneful talents.
But now the 11-year-old – who sings, plays the piano, the guitar AND the drums - is getting ready to perform to an altogether loftier audience, the Dalai Lama – the spiritual leader of the Tibetan Buddhists.
Kieran, a pupil at Armley’s Castleton primary school, has been playing the drums since he was two, taught himself to play the piano, and already has a huge repertoire of songs ranging from West End hits to Green Day anthems.
He is also a member of Opera North’s children’s chorus, and it is with them that he will perform for the Dalai Lama next month, when His Holiness visits Leeds as part of a UK tour.
To add to his range, Kieran will be singing an operatic excerpt in Russian!
Kieran said: “I have been playing the drums since I was two. My mum put some pans up in my toy box and that’s how I got started. I just like playing rock music.”
The Armley youngster’s proud music teacher Jayne Leadbeater said: “He is incredibly talented. I’ve been teaching music for 25 years and in that time I’ve met no-one who has shown that kind of talent at the age he started. It’s pouring out of him really.”
“When he first came to the school at nursery level, he said ‘I play the saucepans’ and we knew we had something different,” she added.
“He was too small to play the school drum kit because he could not reach the foot pedals!”
She said Kieran’s vocal talents were also “incredible”.
“I hope that he will go on to Leeds College of Music.
“But whatever he does I am pretty sure it will be music.”
Kieran works with three music teachers, Ms Leadbeater, drum teacher Adam Savage and band teacher Ben Coleman.
Headteacher Judith Norfolk said Kieran’s talent and dedication had inspired other musical initiatives at the school, and he had received great support from his parents and grandparents.
“Kieran is definitely a future star,” she said.