12-year-old prodigy plays 270-year-old instrument

By Reid Kerr - bioemail
Posted by Ellen Krafve - bio | email

TYLER, TX (KLTV) - Christian Kay's cello is older than him..and his parents...and his country.

When the talented 12-year-old prodigy needed a quality instrument, his parents didn't know where to turn.

"We were thinking about buying one, but [when] we realized how expensive it was going to be, we had to look towards other avenues," mom Tamara Kay said.

With a good quality cello running $15,000 or more, help came from the Carlsen Cello Foundation. One audition tape later, Christian was playing a classic 270-year-old cello.

"It was just stunning how much of a sound came out of that instrument," Tamara said.

"I thought, 'Oh my goodness, that's a really nice cello,'" Christian said. "It's really exciting because all the money and efforts my parents put into me, I think it really paid off."

Christian plays in churches and symphonies all over, taking his natural gifts, and the gift of his cello, and refining them with hard work.

"On a daily basis, I practice three hours a night or more," Christian said. "It's just a talent God has given me, and I'm blessed."

"You have to really be thankful for the gift that you're given," Tamara laughs. "Lord knows he didn't get it from me or his father."

The Carlsen Cello Foundation is an organization that loans out cellos long-term to talented students in need, the cello isn't Christian's to keep, but he can keep it as long as he needs.

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