Six-year-old Leeds piano prodigy recognised as one of the most gifted children in the world
A Leeds piano prodigy has been recognised as one of the most gifted children in the world.
Laasya Chigurupati, aged six, was invited to the 'Top 100 Global Child Prodigy 2020' awards in India after officials noticed her talent.
The musical prodigy, who goes to Park View Primary Academy in Beeston, is able to listen to a song for a short time then go away and play it on her own instrument without any notes - a talent which is incredibly rare, particularly for a child.
The year two pupil travelled to New Delhi with her dad Jithender, 37, and mum Aparna Chodogam, 36, last month for the ceremony on January 3, when she was presented with a certificate and trophy.
She was specially-selected from a list of 15,000 youngsters to attend the event, where various Middle Eastern royalty and academics handed out the awards.
IT worker Jithender said his daughter "absolutely loved" interacting with other gifted children from around the globe.
Jithender said: "It was an incredible experience to be surrounded by that much talent, Laasya had a really amazing time.
"Having her invited to such a prestigious event made my wife and I incredibly proud, she really deserved the recognition.
"Laasya's ability to memorise music is outstanding, she doesn't need to look at notes or anything, she just listens to a song then plays it."
Dad-of-one Jithender said his daughter first showed signs of musical talent aged three, when she was bought a toy xylophone and immediately took to it.
"She was playing songs right away without any teaching whatsoever - it was amazing," he said.
Laasya then graduated to a keyboard and nowadays she learns songs by listening to them on YouTube then going back to her instrument and playing them.
She recorded her first world record in 2017 aged four, after memorising and playing 50 xylophone songs in under 25 minutes.
Just eight months later she scooped a second for memorising 85 songs and playing them on a piano in just 35 minutes.
Jithender has paid tribute to Laasya's school, Parkview Primary, and piano teachers for nurturing his daughter's exceptional raw talent.
The youngster intends to start taking her official examinations later this year.