She's crooned with the Prime Minister, rubbed shoulders with royalty and serenaded thousands in a duet with Lady Gaga all within the past year, yet months after being propelled into the national spotlight Maria Aragon insists she's still a normal 11-year-old.
"Of course I'm living a regular life," she told The Canadian Press from her home in Winnipeg. "It's just that sometimes when I go to a store or something, sometimes people know who I am."
Aragon shot to fame in March with her YouTube rendition of Gaga's smash hit "Born This Way." The pop diva was so impressed with the young Canadian that she tweeted a link to Aragon's video, which went on to get more than 11 million hits in just one week.
"Can't stop crying watching this," Gaga tweeted at the time. "This is why I make music. She is the future."
Aragon has since sung in public numerous times, signed a record deal in her native Philippines and starred in a GAP Kids commercial.
But one of her biggest achievements so far came just recently.
"I wrote my first song the other day," said an excited Aragon.
"I felt really happy because I've been trying to find something to influence me and inspire me but it just came to my head and then I wrote it."
Aragon is playing coy with the details of her first original tune, which will appear on her second album — her first one released in the Philippines featured only cover songs.
"I want to keep it a secret but it's about something that's really important to me," she said.
"I want the whole album to be about something that a lot of people can relate to."
The home-grown star said it was important to remain someone her fans could connect with. She stays grounded by having her 22-year-old sister act as her manager and consults her family on every big decision she takes.
She gives media interviews while taking a break from being homeschooled, still enjoys hanging out with her friends at local haunts and frequently expresses how grateful she is for all the attention she's received.
Her new commitments can take her away from her home for weeks at a time — something Aragon finds hard to deal with at times — but the savvy 11-year-old said the travel and hectic schedule are worth it.
"If you want something, there's something you need to sacrifice, like your time with people you love," she said. "In this past year my dreams have already come true. I just have been really blessed."