Anran Su says playing the piano makes her happy. Image Credit: Clint Egbert/Gulf News

Dubai: A Dubai-based Chinese girl, all of seven years old, is making waves as a prodigy pianist internationally.

Speaking to Gulf News ahead of a premier solo recital on December 8, Anran Su said she discovered her latent talent at the age of four and a half.

“My mum had taken me to a music shop where I happened to try my hand at the piano. I loved it instantly,” she said.

Recognising her potential, her mother Betty then enrolled her into a piano class. “For nearly six months, she was doing online lessons because of the pandemic,” said Betty.

Anran Su with her mum Betty and teacher Gianluca Imperato, an Italian concert pianist and composer. Image Credit: Sharmila Dhal/Gulf News

Subsequently, Anran was brought under the tutelage of well-known Italian concert pianist and composer Gianluca Imperato who found her “simply incredible”.

“In my career, Anran Su is perhaps the most advanced student that I have come across at her age,” said Imperato.

To her credit, Anran went on to earn high distinctions in several ABRSM exams between the ages of five and six. ABRSM or The Associated Board of the Royal Schools of Music is a global music education charity which offers face-to-face and digital exams, sheet music, recordings, apps and courses for students and teachers across the world.

When Anran turned six, she achieved a remarkable feat by passing the ABRSM theory test at level 5, becoming the youngest in the Middle East to do so. She also recently took the ABRSM piano performing exam level 8, and became the youngest to reach this level in the Middle East.

Anran has also topped in several international competitions in Europe. In July, she topped both the A1 category (up to 7) and the A2 category (up to 10) at the Rovere d’Oro International Competition in Italy, and was selected to perform at the competition’s concert, said Imperato.

In addition to her competition successes, Anran held her first piano recital, a collaborative effort with her teacher at the Steinway and Sons Hall Dubai. The December 8 concert is her first solo performance in which she will hold fort for an hour, again at the Steinway and Sons Hall Dubai. “She will be the youngest pianist to hold solo recital in Middle East,” said Imperato, adding that Anran has taken audiences by storm at the Conservatory of Music in Italy in the past.

Ask Anran about the preparations for the big day, and she says she is a bit nervous but looking forward to it. “It’s always like that. Sometimes my heart beats a little faster before a concert but I am also very happy. Once the concert begins, I just lose myself to the music. During a competition, I also want to win. The thing is I really like music, it’s very joyful,” said Anran.

“Bach, Chopin, Lyadov, iBert, Albeniz, Chopin’s Martinez are my favourites,” she added.

According to Imperato, Anran is a gifted child who plays like a pro. “She is very hardworking and can memorise pieces visually. She is a very quick learner too,” he noted.

Betty also vouches for her hard work. “She puts in a lot of work because she enjoys playing the piano. On an average, she practises for at least three hours every day. She is not afraid of the stage either,” she said.