AN EIGHT-year-old drummer from Malvern looks set for a hit music career after smashing the record for the youngest person to pass a prestigious exam.
Roseanna Gray is only in Year 3 at Malvern St James girls’ school, but has already achieved Grade 8 in drums, beating the previous record holder by five years.
The talented youngster performed three songs as part of the exam – including one she wrote herself – and has since been approached by various television and radio programmes on the back of her success.
Dad David, who worked nationally as a professional musician, taught Roseanna everything she knows and he told The Observer one of the ‘biggest world-wide drum manufactures’ was looking to ‘support her career’.
“For her, this is like a second language,” he said. “She has grown up listening to the drums before she could actually speak.
“She can play things at age eight that I was only really getting to grips with at the age of 30.
“She is worryingly good.
“For me, as a parent, this is fantastic but as a teacher it is the greatest feeling I can have as it shows I can pass my knowledge on to her. It is great news.”
Roseanna, who first picked up a set of drumsticks when she was aged just six, is also hoping to get her achievement in the Guinness World Book of Records.
“I feel really pleased with myself,” Roseanna said. “In the exam I was quite nervous when I started but when I got into it I felt more comfortable.
“I like performing rock music because it is quite a groovy beat and I also like making up my own beats.”
A video of Roseanna, who said one of her main inspirations was percussionist Evelyn Glennie, performing the drums on Facebook has been viewed more than 6,000 times.
Mum Emily added: “It is really difficult to properly understand what she has done, but it is just normal for her it is no big deal.
“I am incredibly proud of her.”
Patricia Woodhouse, headmistress of Malvern St James, said:
“This is a fantastic achievement for Roseanna, and even better that she is trouncing the stereotype that drums are for boys.
“I admire her talent and dedication. As a musician myself, I know how hard it is to gain Grade 8, let alone at the tender age of eight. We will watch with interest as Roseanna’s musical career unfolds.”