Bridgette Xie’s family had their virtual piano lessons during the pandemic to give their daughter something to do, having no idea their 3-year-old would become one of the youngest to perform at Carnegie Hall.
The little fingers of the Ridgefield, Connecticut girl hover over the piano keys like that of a much older student who has 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 the right hand in D major, the left hand in C major, the right hand in G major’… old man, that’s really amazing,” said Zhang.
Zhang worked with Bridgette for months, giving her increasingly difficult assignments and getting her into competitions. She has won first place twice and has now secured a seat to play at historic Carnegie Hall in New York City.
“The first time I saw her play, I was deeply moved,” Xie’s mother said.
“Her mother is so excited… I still remember her tears in her eyes,” Zhang added.
Bridgette is like any other toddler otherwise. She enjoys playing with toys and reading books. She is also able to read music which gives her a huge head start when it comes to practicing and learning.
“Forget the old thought” that a 3-year-old can or can’t do something, said Zhang, adding that Bridgette is proof that you never know when a child is ready to thrive.
When Bridgette plays at Carnegie Hall in November, it will be her first time performing in front of an in-person audience and she will be one of the youngest players there.