Most Christmas concerts at elementary schools are low-budget spectacles with a limited audience.
But that wasn’t the case this year at St. Joseph Catholic Elementary School in Markham. The school’s Christmas concert is a YouTube sensation thanks to a 10-year-old Grade 5 student Jayden Anderson.
Anderson stole the show Wednesday night with his flawless rendition of Justin Bieber’s cover of the classic Christmas carol, “The Little Drummer Boy.”
Bieber’s version includes a rap verse, which Jayden performed.
Video of the concert was uploaded to his personal YouTube account and it wasn’t long until the teen idol took notice.
Bieber tweeted a link to the video Thursday to his 31 million followers:
“This kid Jayden killed it! nice. #DrummerBoy”
Bieber himself was plucked out of obscurity in 2007 at age 13 after a video of him playing acoustic guitar garnered widespread attention from music industry heavyweights, including R&B star Usher, who later became his mentor.
At publication time, Jayden’s video had garnered almost 65,000 views.
Angie Careri, his homeroom teacher, said Anderson was excited by the attention.
He had been practicing the routine for weeks and pulled it off without a hitch.
“He has a lot of swag for a little 10-year-old so he was able to shine,” said Careri.
Unlike their peers at the Toronto District School Board, Catholic school teachers are not embroiled in a labour dispute with the provincial government and extracurricular have not been impacted.
Anderson, who was stuck in class and unable to speak with the Star, is described by teachers as an excellent student who is liked by his classmates.
He loves singing but his real passion is basketball, Careri said. “He wants to be a basketball player and go to a great university.”
It’s not the first time a young Canadian has grabbed the music industry’s attention because of YouTube.
In 2011, a then 10-year-old Maria Aragon got her shot at stardom after her cover of Lady Gaga’s single “Born This Way” was viewed over 54 million times. Gaga was so impressed by Aragon’s talent that she invited the Winnipeg native to join her on stage during one of her North American tour stops.