Back in 2010, a video of a boy playing the piano and singing at a school talent show was one of the hottest things on the internet.
People were enchanted by the teen’s seemingly effortless rendition of Lady Gaga’s “Paparazzi.”
In fact, everyone loved it so much that the 13-year-old became a star almost overnight.
Greyston Chance, who is now 23 years old, has more than a dozen singles, two albums, two plays, and multiple world tours under his belt.
His popular video managed to capture the attention of Ellen DeGeneres.
And she was so impressed with the boy’s natural talent that she signed him on to her brand-new record label.
Since then, Grayson has gone from strength to strength. He tried his hand at acting, playing the role of Jimmy Chance – a younger version of the protagonist of Fox’s Raising Hope. Grayson has come a long way since his school days and he continues to mature as an artist.
But he’ll never forget his humble beginnings.
To think that it all began with that show-stopping performance when he was just 13 years old is incredible. The amateur video catapulted him into the limelight when it went viral on Reddit and quickly spread to other social networks.
To date, it’s received more than 65 million views.
The video was uploaded on Youtube by Grayson on April 28, 2010. At the time Grayson didn’t think much of it but, just a few weeks later, it went viral. He was performing at a grade school music festival.
Nobody could have anticipated that this performance would be the one to launch his career.
The video opens with an unassuming Grayson sitting on the stage in front of the piano. The audience looks somewhat bored when he begins to play, but their eyes widen when he opens his mouth and starts to sing the first line of Gaga’s iconic song:
“We are the crowd, we’re coming out…”
Grayson hits the highest notes effortlessly while playing the piano like a pro.
It wasn’t long before the video of the teen with the voice of an angel reached Ellen DeGeneres. And by May 12, her producers had called his mom and invited him to come onto the Ellen show!
Grayson was interviewed and performed “Paparazzi” once again on the show. But Ellen had a surprise up her sleeve.
In his interview with Ellen, Grayson explained why he chose to perform the Lady Gaga song in the first place:
“She’s just such an inspiration because I love her individuality… and the way she can harness that with her talent is amazing,” he told Ellen.
Ellen agreed, saying “yeah, she is pretty special.”
Then, Ellen said that there was somebody on the line who wanted to speak to him.
While he was on the stage, he received a call from none other than his “true inspiration”, Lady Gaga herself!
She told him that she was really excited that he’d chosen to cover her song and that he must continue to “follow his dreams”, “work hard”, and “stay away from girls!”
It’s hard to believe that a video a teenager posted on Youtube led him to speak to his idol just six weeks later.
Although he admitted to having three years’ worth of piano lessons, Greyson had had no vocal training whatsoever when he performed at the talent show in 2010… but he hits those high notes perfectly.
To see 13-year-old Grayson Chance performing the song that made him a star, watch the video below!
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