Twelve-year-old Greyson Michael Chance appeared in a 6th grade talent show in Edmund, Oklahoma last month and today he is a YouTube sensation. With an appearance this morning on the Ellen Degeneres Show and more than eight million views of his YouTube cover of “Paparazzi” by pop singer Lady Gaga, Chance could very well be the next Justin Bieber or better. If you need convincing, listen for yourself and check out the faces on the female students as he performs—they go from mild disinterest to shock and awe.
Chance explained to Ellen Degeneres this morning how he found out about the invitation to her show yesterday during math class. “I was sitting in math class and I got a text from my mom. And she said, ‘Call me ASAP.’” The 6th grader assumed he was in trouble, but after “excusing” himself from class, he learned otherwise. The trip to Los Angeles was his first flight ever and he says he was “very scared.”
The poised and talented 12-year-old performed “Paparazzi” on the Ellen Degeneres Show and got a surprise call from Lady Gaga herself, who described the young student as “very talented.” (His music teacher went a step further following his performance at the district-wide middle school talent show. “In my opinion,” she said, “he just taught Lady Gaga a lesson.”)
Chance is also a songwriter. He posted two of the songs he wrote— Broken Hearts and Stars—on his YouTube page to comments from around the around world professing amazement and comparing the young artist to Billy Joel and Elton John.
Update: According to News on 6, a Tulsa television station, (and a number of other blogs), Greyson Michael Chance has signed a record deal with Interscope Records— that’s the same label that carries U2, Sheryl Crow, and oddly enough, Lady Gaga.
A version of this news article first appeared in the Teaching Now blog.