Bridgette Xie’s family got her virtual piano lessons during the pandemic to give their daughter something to do, having no idea that their 3-year-old would become one of the youngest people to perform at Carnegie Hall.
The tiny fingers of the young girl from Ridgefield, Connecticut, fly over the piano keys like that of a much older student who’s been practicing for years. Her teacher, Felicia Feng Zhang, says Xie is a child prodigy and her skills are a rare gift.
"I said, 'now can you play right hand D major, left hand C major, right hand G major'...Then she went, boom boom boom, make all the different moves. That’s very ...for that 3 years old it is really amazing," Zhang said.
Zhang worked with Bridgette for months, giving her more and more challenging assignments and entering her in competitions. She won first place twice and now she has scored a spot to play at New York City's historic Carnegie Hall.
"The first time I see her play I was deeply moved," Xie's mother said.
"Her mom is just so excited.... I still remember her tears in her eyes," Zhang added.
Bridgette is like any other toddler otherwise. She likes to play with toys and read books. She's also able to read music, which gives her an enormous leg up when it comes to practicing and learning.
"Forget the old thinking" that a 3-year-old can or cannot do something, Zhang said, adding that Bridgette is proof you never know when a child is ready to blossom.
When Bridgette plays at Carnegie Hall in November, it’ll be her first time playing before a live audience in person and she’ll one of the youngest players there.