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Meet 11-year-old Derby guitar genius who wants Iron Maiden to see his videos

today17 September 2022 2

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Oskar Gladysz has only been playing guitar for three years – but he’s described as ‘off the scale good’

Mastering the art of playing an instrument is a time-consuming task that can take a lot of hard work and practice. But this isn’t something 11-year-old Oskar Gladysz has ever shied away from.

The Derby youngster, who moved from Germany to Littleover just last October, has only been playing the guitar for around three years but has already made a lasting impression on Foulds Guitar owner Jason Marshall, who described him as “off the scale good”.

“We always say he was born 40, 50 years too late because he’s got a lot of passion for Iron Maiden – that is absolutely his favourite band. That what he’s playing all the time,” said his dad, Lukasz.

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“He loves Judas Priest, Led Zeppelin, so he’s playing really old-school rock. If Iron Maiden could see any of his videos that would be the absolute dream.”

Oskar, who is from Poland but grew up in Germany, started playing the violin at the age of four. His dad, who is a managing director of Schwarz Produktion UK and doesn’t play an instrument himself, tried to convince Oskar to start playing the guitar but said the youngster wasn’t overly keen at first.

“He started at the age of four playing the violin. That was the first instrument. I tried to convince him to pay guitar but he wasn’t so interested.

“And I remember it exactly, three years ago on June 1, 2019, he got interested in electric guitars, so we got him a guitar. And ever since then, he’s been playing all day long, from the morning to the late evening. I remember when he got it he was waking up at 5am to play, he’s absolutely crazy about it.”

Oskar attracts attention wherever he plays. When the youngster busked in Barcelona before an Iron Maiden concert over the summer, big crowds gathered around, filming and cheering him on.

But despite his clear talent and hard work, Lukasz and Oscar’s mother have no huge ambitions for Oskar, other than ensuring he is happy.

Lukasz said: “My biggest dream is that he carries on playing, not because I want him to be famous, but if you meet him you’ll see he seems to be a very shy person, he’s very tiny, but the way he transforms himself on stage after one or two songs, is extraordinary. “It’s a great way for him to express himself.”

Oskar is now at Derby High School, which they chose due to its “outstanding” music department. He currently has a single one-hour lesson a week to help correct some of his techniques and help solidify his understanding of music theory.

Lukasz added: “I think one of the best parts about Oskar is that he very quickly developed the skill to learn on his own. He’ll go online, and read different songs, and there’s some website where you can train too. Neither my wife nor I play any instruments but he’s got a natural talent for it.

“There was a time when I would try and learn with him, try and help him with his theory, but at some point, the learning curve exploded and I couldn’t catch up with him. We tried to encourage him to learn full songs, we got him a speaker you can connect your phone to. There’s an app where you can mute the guitar, so it’s like you’re playing with the full band – and that was just another big boost in his learning curve.”

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