Durban - Teen musical sensation Sria Velloo is over the moon at being given the chance to make South Africa proud at the World Championship of Performing Arts in Hollywood.
Sria, 13, wowed judges during the regional round of the competition in Rustenburg last week, receiving two gold and two silver medals.
The Grade 8 pupil from Roodepoort said when the announcement was made she could not stop shaking.
“It was amazing! I have always entered the competition and always came out with medals, but for the first time I have been chosen to represent the country,” she said.
Her proud mom, Kanya, said she noticed her daughter’s talent when she was just 3.
“We knew she had it in her. From the time she was small, music was her natural talent.
"During the competition she played two Grade 8 pieces, which is the highest level anyone can play in music.”
She added: “I bought her a toy keyboard when she was 3 and I showed her the tune Twinkle Twinkle Little Star, and she looked at me and played the same song exactly the way I showed her in one try and that is when I realised she was destined for greater things.
"At age 4 we enrolled her for piano lessons and here we are. All her long nights, hard work and dedication have paid off.”
The Curro Academy Wilgeheuwel pupil, who is also learning guitar, is soaring in her piano studies.
“I am busy with my Grade 5 theory and practical in piano and next year I will complete my Grade 8 in theory and practical, which means I will be qualified to teach.
"And the funny or interesting thing is that my (piano) teacher, Marco Smith, tells me all the time once I am in Grade 10 (in school) and qualified, he will set up a room for me to teach others,” she giggled.
Sria, who draws inspiration from Rudy Mancuso, an American actor, internet personality and musician, is from a musical background.
Her great-grandfather, Muthu Pillay, founded the Star Orchestra and her grandfather, Professor Poobhalan Pillay, is also a singer.
“We have all been blown away by her talent and for her to be chosen to represent the country at only 13 is something even more amazing,” exclaimed her dad, Kishen Velloo.
The teen will be jetting off to Hollywood with her parents on July 2.