A 6-year-old Stafford County boy, Enzo Zhao, will play the piano at New York City's famed Carnegie Hall on Easter Sunday.
Enzo, who attends second grade at Saint William of York Catholic School in North Stafford, earned the right to play there following his performance at American Protégé's Fall 2015 International Music Talent Competition, where he received an honorable mention.
Enzo began taking piano lessons the summer of 2014, according to his piano teacher, Susan Flinn.
Flinn, who owns The Music Studio in mid-Stafford, said that Enzo also takes violin and guitar lessons from two other teachers at the studio.
She described him as "pretty amazing," noting that he is a fun, sweet child, very well-mannered and humble.
Last year, Enzo's family vacationed at Walt Disney World in Florida and Enzo voluntarily took his violin with him and practiced each day, she said.
"He loves music," she added.
Enzo's mother, Zhenzhen Wu, said that her son is "usually excited about recitals" and is definitely excited to play at Carnegie Hall. His talent, she said, came naturally.
"When he was 1 or 2 years old, I played a little bit of keyboard for him, and he liked it," she said.
When he was 4½, she and Enzo's father, Derek Zhao, sent him to learn to play the piano from a professional and his skill and interest blossomed.
Enzo speaks Mandarin and Cantonese, along with English. He also enjoys playing soccer.
The international music competition was open to instrumentalists of all kinds, vocalists and traditional folk and jazz groups. The instrumentalists ran the gamut from playing the piano, wind instruments, or strings to brass and traditional.
At Carnegie, Enzo will be playing the Sonatina in E Minor, Opus 157 No. 8, by Fritz Spindler.
Enzo competed at the Rappahannock Music Society's Jazz, Rags & Blues Festival at Mary Washington University in Fredericksburg, Flinn said. There, he received a superior rating and a blue ribbon.
Enzo also played the piano at the Young Artists 2016 Competition in Fredericksburg in January, Flinn noted.
“That competition is largely based on level of repertoire,” she said, and Enzo did not make the final cut. He did, however, gain more experience to help him perform on the Carnegie stage.
Tracy Bell can be reached at email@example.com.