Spartanburg teen pianist overcoming leukemia, Down syndrome - FOX Carolina 21

Spartanburg teen pianist overcoming leukemia, Down syndrome

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Peter Rosset plays the piano at home. (Sept. 5, 2013/FOX Carolina) Peter Rosset plays the piano at home. (Sept. 5, 2013/FOX Carolina)

A Spartanburg 13-year-old is a gifted musician, memorizing complex piano pieces and inspiring audiences each time he plays, and he only started playing a little more than three years ago.

For Peter Rosset, piano lessons quickly went from beginner to advanced, achieving a lot even with the challenges of battling leukemia and having Down syndrome.

"He told us, 'I really have to play the piano' and so we got a piano and signed him up for lessons," said Peter's mom Ivy Rosset.

Peter said his favorite pieces to play are by Chopin, Bach, Beethoven, Mozart and Tchaikovsky.

And as talented as he is at playing those pieces, his parents said the challenges he overcomes every day make his story even more inspirational.

"Peter doesn't let anything stop him," Ivy Rosset said. "He has challenges with the extra chromosome 21, Down syndrome, and he doesn't let any of those challenges stop him. And then he was diagnosed with leukemia and he doesn't let that stop him. He keeps going and enjoying life."

And that means doing what he loves best - playing the piano. Even on long car rides, he reads stacks of music he wants to play like they're books.

Peter takes piano lessons at Converse College and practices at home.

"We found out that he has some natural gifts, like he has perfect pitch and he is able to quickly learn and memorize musical patterns," Peter's mom said.

He has a YouTube channel where he posts videos of his performances and is trying to get 1 million views.

Peter will also perform Friday Sept. 6 at the Gala For Hope at the Chapman Cultural Center. The fundraiser is for Children's Security Blanket and helps children with cancer. The event is at 6:30 p.m. and ticket prices start at $50.

Peter's cancer is in remission and has 16 months of treatment left as he continues to heal.

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