Young entrepreneur from Wrexham appears on TV

Reporter:

Claire Gallagher and Helen Davies

BRIGHT spark Kate Harrison had a great idea – a piano with keys that light up when touched.

Now the 10-year-old from Wrexham has showcased her invention on television.

Kate appeared on CBBC show My Genius Idea – a Dragons’ Den style programme that sees youngsters putting their ideas to entrepreneur Tom Lawton.

The Victoria Primary School pupil’s idea was intended to help children learn to play the piano.

Rachel Harrison, Kate’s mum, said: “Shine TV contacted the school to ask whether anyone wanted to enter. When Kate came home with the form she already had her idea.

“When she plays the piano and tries to read the music she sometimes finds it hard to know which notes to play because the base and treble clef have different notes.

“Kate came up with the idea that you could sell a piano music book with a CD which could be inserted into a keyboard to light up the notes you needed to play.

“There would be two different colours that lit up on the piano, one on each hand. She thought the speed could be adjusted on the CD so you could speed up as you got better and it could be used for children and adults.”

Kate, who has been playing the piano for two and a half years, went to Manchester to appear on the programme at the Shine North studio.

“She was nervous but really keen to do it and excited,” said Rachel.

“Kate’s quite a shy child but very enthusiastic. It was a big step for her.”

The show aired last week and runs every Tuesday for nine weeks to find the best junior inventor.

In the nine episodes the show sees young inventors compete in a series of tasks to impress two scientists and a mysterious benefactor, known only as ‘The Big Cheese’, to determine whose ideas have the potential to succeed in the real world.
Unfortunately Kate did not make it through to the semi-finals.

Mum Rachel added: “She was disappointed but not devastated as she had a brilliant time.

“She thoroughly enjoyed it, it’s given her a taste for TV.”

Asked whether she thinks Kate will end up appearing on the adult version of Dragon’s Den when she’s older, Rachel said: “Who knows. She loves science and she really enjoyed being on TV.”

Inventions developed by other children on the programme include a bed making machine, an air bag for bicycles, a marine mammal protection device and magnetic car bumpers.

Lisa Perrin, executive producer for Shine North, said: “We are thrilled to be able to give children this exciting platform to showcase and develop their inventions, some of the ideas are utterly brilliant.

“It is astonishing that they have all been created by children under 12.”

The semi-finalists will recruit ordinary folk to trial a prototype of their inventions with the show culminating in a final with two of the best inventors battling it out to win a prestigious trophy.

See full story in the Leader

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