A 9-year-old fiddle player from Piney Flats got a showcase for his musical talents on national TV Thursday night, but he also highlighted another talent – up and coming comedian.
Appearing on “The Tonight Show With Jay Leno,” Carson Peters was one of three guests taking part in a talent segment titled “Does This Delight Betty White?”
White, the venerable TV star who’s appeared in show business for more than seven decades, judged three competitors: Wisconsin resident Kevin Banya, who made a straight jump up 55 inches to land perfectly on a platform; Idaho resident Paul Blair, who hula-hooped a 115-pound tire; and Carson, who delighted White and the audience with his fiddle playing.
Carson certainly wasn’t intimidated by being in the presence of Leno and White, two of America’s most celebrated comedians.
When asked by Leno, “What seems to be the difference between a fiddle and a violin?,” Carson didn’t miss a beat.
“There’s really no difference,” the fourth grader said. “You just play it differently. But there is a joke. A violin has strings, and a fiddle has straaangs.”
But Carson wasn’t finished having a little fun with his celebrity hosts.
As he began to play, he performed a very poor rendition of “Twinkle Twinkle Little Star.”
Carson looked up sheepishly at White, who didn’t look delighted, and said with a grin, “I’m just kidding!”
He then launched into a 37-second performance that had the audience clapping and Leno declaring, “Wow!”
And White was, indeed, delighted.
“That is absolutely terrific,” she gushed. “Thank you, darling, with all my heart.”
“That’s a yes?” Leno asked, and White replied, “That’s a big yes!”
Leno presented Carson with Universal Studio passes for the boy and his family.
White blew Carson kisses, and then gave him a hug.