NASHVILLE, Tenn. (December 22, 2015) - YouTube sensation Christopher Duffley, whose August 2015 performance of the National Anthem at Fenway Park has been named one of the most exciting viral videos of the year, will make multiple appearances in the national media this month.
The fourteen-year-old singer, who is blind and has autism, will be featured on the ABC television network special, The Year: 2015, which is set to air tonight, and is also featured in this month's issue of Sports Illustrated Kids magazine.
Christopher brought fans and players at Boston's historic Fenway Park to their feet when he performed the national anthem prior to the Major League Baseball game between the Cleveland Indians and the Boston Red Sox. His heartfelt rendition of "The Star Spangled Banner" not only captured the hearts of fans at the stadium, but a video of his performance blew up on social media outlets and caught the attention of both local and national media.
The video was so exciting and inspiring that ABC News has included it in its Most Exciting Viral Videos segment of the news program's year end recap special, The Year: 2015, hosted by Good Morning America News Anchor Robin Roberts, which will air on the ABC television network tonight, Tuesday, December 22, 2015 at 8 pm Eastern, and again on Sunday, December 27, 2015 at 3 pm Eastern. Check local listings for details.
Sports Illustrated Kids magazine has highlighted Christopher's performance in its year end double issue under its "Moments to Shine" section.
Christopher's performance originally went viral once the Associated Press broke the story, gaining coverage in such high profile media outlets as Sports Illustrated, ESPN, MLB.com, The Bleacher Report, Fox News, ABC affiliate station WMUR, The Boston Globe, USA Today and Telemundo New York, among many others.
Christopher's August 2015 performance marked the third time Christopher has sung the National Anthem at Fenway, but this one was a bit more special for the young singer, as it capped off the weekend celebration of the release of his second CD, Believer. The follow-up to Christopher's wildly successful and inspirational debut, Eyes of My Heart, Believer focuses on life rooted in faith that transcends physical disabilities. The project is currently available online from Christopher's website, christopherduffley.com, and other online retailers including iTunes via digital download.
Christopher, who is currently touring in support of Believer, has previously been featured by media outlets including The Huffington Post and The Blaze. The YouTube video of his performance of "Open the Eyes of My Heart" has garnered more than 7.5 million views worldwide.
For more information about Duffley and Believer, visit christopherduffley.com, like on Facebook (facebook.com/ChristopherDuffley) or follow on Twitter (@ChrisDuffley).
About Christopher Duffley:
Christopher Duffley entered this world with only a 50 percent chance of survival. Born prematurely at 26 weeks, Christopher weighed just 1 lb., 12 oz. and tested positive for cocaine. Miraculously, he survived, but an eye condition, retinopathy of prematurity (ROP), a disease that affects the eyes of many premature babies, rendered him totally blind by the time he was 6 months old. Due to his birth parents' inability to care for him because of their drug dependency, Christopher was discharged from the hospital into foster care.
But Christopher's struggles were not the end of the story. When his biological aunt and her husband, Christine and Stephen Duffley, learned that Christopher was in foster care, they sought him out. Once they located the child, they brought him home to New Hampshire to be part of their family.
By the time he reached 5 years old, Duffley had been diagnosed with autism. Although he had rarely conversed until he reached the first grade, Duffley's adopted mother, Christine, had noticed his ability to make rhythmic noises and keep beat, and he had begun to pick out songs on the piano by age 3. Because of this natural affinity, music therapy was a logical choice to help Christopher Duffley learn to communicate, which Christine Duffley says he did more often by singing than talking. And, when he sang, it was in perfect pitch.
Duffley's story as a popular entertainer began when a video of the then 10-year-old Duffley singing "Open The Eyes of My Heart" at the Capitol Center for the Performing Arts in New Hampshire went viral, garnering more than 8.7 million views on YouTube. News of his remarkable talent spread like wildfire, culminating in Duffley singing the national anthem for the Boston Red Sox baseball team at Fenway Park.
Demand for Duffley to release a CD swelled, propelling the young singer and his family to travel to Nashville to work with Dove Award-winning producer, songwriter and arranger Steven V. Taylor (Michael W. Smith, Natalie Grant, Kirk Franklin).
The result was an 11-song compilation of inspirational, patriotic and sacred songs, titled Eyes Of My Heart, that reaches deep into listeners' hearts and encourages them to see with new eyes. Duffley's followup project, Believer, released Saturday, August 15, 2015.
"Although the circumstances have been difficult and we have had challenges, we have found much joy and so many more blessings," says Christine Duffley. "Family life is imperfect and messy, and it has been a journey of love, forgiveness and abandonment. Through it all, however, we are grateful that Christopher's biological parents chose life and, now, God is using this life to touch the world for Christ."