A seven-year-old’s stunning rendition of the US national anthem at a Los Angeles soccer match has become a viral sensation.
Singing before the match between the LA Galaxy and Seattle Sounders, footage of pint-sized Malea Emma Tjandrawiwidjaja’s performance has amassed more than 435,000 shares on the Major League Soccer Youtube channel, and almost 70,000 views on her own.
The performance was also shared on Twitter by soccer superstar Zlatan Ibrahimovic who has 5.38 million followers.
Carrying herself like a polished performer, with arm aloft and with a voice belying her years, the players watched on in amazement, while the crowd roared their encouragement..
Watch Malea Emma belt it out
“I was thinking that I cannot do anything wrong because it’s a really special song to America,” she told ABC News after the performance.
View this post on Instagram
A post shared by Malea Emma 曾晶莹 (@maleaemma) on
Malea Emma got the gig after winning a contest on social media to find a national anthem singer for the match.
The soprano began taking singing lessons at age three, her father Arman Tjandrawidjaja told USA Today’s parenting website, All the Moms.
“She’s been singing forever. Basically before she could speak. Always singing,” he said, adding that she sings in the shower or while doing homework without even knowing it. “Sometimes we have to tell her to be quiet.”
The 114-centimetre dynamo also acts, as an agent and has even appeared in commercials in the US.
Her father said Malea Emma likes singing, acting and musical theater. She’s appeared as Molly in a stage performance of “Annie” at the Hollywood Bowl. But she likes singing the best.
But her impressive talents don’t necessarily mean she’s immune to feeling nervous before a performance.
“Always before I sing, my heart will beat really, really fast,” she told CBS News.