Monday, December 29, 2008
Piano Prodigy Ethan Bortnick is only 7 years old!
NPR's Weekend Edition Saturday, December 20, 2008
Click the audio link above to hear Ethan talk about the piano and play songs from his home in Hollywood, Fla.
Pianist Ethan Bortnick, 7, composes pieces about animals and wants to be a zoo keeper.
Weekend Edition Saturday, December 20, 2008 - Pianist, composer and world-class entertainer Ethan Bortnick has appeared on Oprah, The Tonight Show with Jay Leno, Good Morning America, and Martha Stewart. He's shared a stage with Beyonce, Josh Groban, Santana, Natalie Cole, Nelly Furtado, Wyclef Jean, Smokey Robinson, Gloria Gaynor, Patti LaBelle, and The Pointer Sisters. He can play more than 200 songs from memory, has composed more than 30 pieces of music that are being published, and has raised record amounts for children's charities.
His accomplishments are comparable to those of well-known established musicians and entertainers, and he's only 7 years old.
When he was 3, Ethan asked his parents for piano lessons. "They're like, 'You know what, I don't think you can have piano lessons, because you're still in diapers.' So I listened to every note of Mozart's 'Alla Turca,' and I started playing, and they're like, 'Wait, the audio's not on, so who is it? Oh man.' They thought it was a ghost or something playing." When they found out who was really playing, Ethan was allowed to take piano lessons.
At 7, Ethan has already started writing his own pieces. One song he wrote, "Arctic Jazz," is about, "a manatee who went all the way from Florida to Antarctica to play a jazz party."
Despite his early accomplishments, Ethan doesn't plan on being a professional pianist as an adult. "I'm going to be a zookeeper," he says. "I love animals. That's why I write every song about animals."