A SHOPPING trip turned into the thrill of a lifetime for little Elliot Stiff.
While at the MetroCentre, the Washington youngster took part in a singing competition which catapulted him on to the red carpet in London rubbing shoulders with stars of the silver screen.
The six-year-old, who is a pupil at Holley Park Academy, saw the promotional event for the film Nativity 2, which included a singing contest, and asked mum Lyndsey if he could take part.
Elliot wowed the judges to take first place and was asked to go to London for the final a few days later where he competed against scores of youngsters.
Elliot was chosen as a joint national winner and the prize was to sing at the premiere of Nativity 2.
The Wearside youngster has also been told he will have a part in Nativity 3, with filming starting next year.
Lyndsey, a manager at a sandwich shop, said: “We didn’t know anything about the prize at first.
“It was just a bit of fun.”
Elliot, along with his mum, dad Darren, and big sister Brogan, 13, said they enjoyed their all-expenses-paid trip to the capital for the premiere.
The budding entertainer got to meet some of the celebrities from the film, including former Dr Who David Tennant who all wished him luck before he sang in front of 1,300 people.
Lyndsey said: “When he actually got up and sang, it was amazing.
“We didn’t know how he would react in front of that many people because we tried to get him to rehearse, but he was just like ‘I will get up and do it if I feel like it’.”
The youngster himself said: “I really, really enjoyed it. It was awesome.”
Since his brush with fame, Elliot has also become a star at his Washington school where he performed the song he sang in London, One Direction’s What Makes You Beautiful, for the whole school, including parents and grandparents.
Glenda Wood, business manager at the Oxclose school, said: “He is really enjoying being in the public eye.
“He is so funny and a real little character. We are really proud of him.
“But, we didn’t realise he wanted to be a performer and we didn’t know of his singing talent, we will certainly be making the most of it in our future plays.”