Winnipeg Free Press - PRINT EDITION

First a tweet, now an invite

Gaga to city girl: Join me onstage

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Maria Aragon is about to get started on the coolest homework of her life.

The 10-year-old YouTube sensation spoke with her idol, pop star Lady Gaga on Friday afternoon, culminating in a request to perform a duet at a concert next month in Toronto.

The Grade 5 student at Isaac Brock School was overcome with emotion as she had a phone conversation with Gaga herself from the studios of radio station Hot 103 FM.

"I didn't expect Lady Gaga to talk to me. It was totally overwhelming," she said shortly afterwards.

The crying, it appears, was mutual.

"Not only do you have such a beautiful voice and you are so joyful to watch, but every once in a while, whether people believe it or not, I have a very bad day," Lady Gaga told Maria over the phone. "I was not having such a good day and when (entertainment blogger Perez Hilton) sent me the video of you singing Born This Way, I was so overjoyed that I began to cry. Maybe you're just going to have to come on stage with me and sing that song."

Maria said the offer to sing with her idol caught her completely by surprise.

"(Asking me to sing a duet) makes me feel very talented. It's crazy," she said.

Maria has become an overnight sensation on YouTube with the video of her singing Born This Way garnering more than 2.9 million views by Friday evening.

It went viral after an enthusiastic Twitter message from Lady Gaga to her eight million followers.

"Can't stop crying watching this," her message read. "This is why I make music. She is the future."

Maria, who has been singing since she was three, said she has even thought about pursuing a record deal.

"If people want to hear songs that I might write, sure. It's really up to my family," she said.

Her sister, Linger, 22, said throughout the two-day whirlwind, Maria remains a 10-year-old kid, still wanting to go to school, do her homework and play with her friends.

"We have her best interests at heart. We want to make her famous but keep her grounded and keep her humble," she said. "I'm very proud of her. Even though she's my younger sister, I look up to her."

Maria had planned to fly to Toronto to perform in studio on Toronto's Virgin Radio 99.9 FM on Friday morning, but the foul weather in Winnipeg prevented her from making it there, so they chatted with her by phone instead.

Maria made a visit to the Hot 103 studios Thursday for a special interview and performance with DJ Ace Burpee, who picked her up from school in a stretch limo. When she was dropped back off at school in the afternoon, her classmates went wild.

lindsey.wiebe@freepress.mb.ca

 

 

Republished from the Winnipeg Free Press print edition February 19, 2011 A3

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