Lang Lang surprises 10-year-old superfan on The Piano after sparkling Haydn solo

13 May 2024, 14:12 | Updated: 13 May 2024, 14:55

Young boy wows with piano sonata on The Piano

By Siena Linton

10-year-old pianist Sum received the surprise of a lifetime when he performed a Haydn piano sonata for his hero in Edinburgh, for Channel 4’s ‘The Piano’.

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With The Piano back on television screens for a second series, the internet is overflowing with heartwarming piano performances by everyday people across Britain’s train station concourses.

For the third episode of this series, a 10-year-old piano prodigy named Sum took to the piano in Edinburgh station with a thoroughly impressive performance of Haydn’s Piano Sonata No.37.

“This is a very difficult Haydn sonata which is very hard to play clean,” star pianist and The Piano judge Lang Lang told his fellow panellist, Mika.

Sporting a bow tie covered in musical notes, and arriving with Lang Lang’s own book tucked under his arm, Sum seemed full of nervous excitement as he took his seat at the piano ready to play.

“I started [playing piano] when I was three or four, and then I started really having lessons,” he told the show’s host Claudia Winkleman.

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10-year-old Sum wows Lang Lang on The Piano with Haydn sonata.
10-year-old Sum wows Lang Lang on The Piano with Haydn sonata. Picture: Channel 4

Sum was accompanied to the station with his dad, who told Channel 4: “When he was young we went to a toy shop. He just ran to a toy piano and played that immediately. He had no interest in other toys at all.”

As Sum began to play with a jovial flourish of the keyboard, both Lang Lang and Mika seem visibly shocked. “Woah, he’s good!” Lang Lang exclaimed. “He is so musical... it’s a dramatic way of playing Haydn.”

“He’s super expressive,” Mika agreed, pointing out several other children standing awestruck in the large gathered crowd.

As Sum reached the final bars of the sonata, Lang Lang said: “I think I’ve got to get out there, to say a quick hi.”

Battling the crowds, the star pianist arrives on the concourse as the crowd are still applauding. Sneaking up behind Sum, he puts his arm around the young prodigy and says: “Bravo!”

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Lang Lang surprises little boy on Channel 4's The Piano

Sum lets out an excited scream in surprise at being face to face with his piano hero.

“Beautiful playing, I loved it,” Lang Lang told Sum, before signing his book.

“I’m so happy!” the young boy replied. “You’re my favourite pianist, you inspire me a lot.”

“It’s a great honour for me, thank you,” Lang Lang replied, before hinting: “Maybe see you later...”

As Sum and his father left the train station both were crying tears of joy.

Sum will appear in the finale of series two of The Piano, for which a broadcast date is yet to be announced.