Teen YouTube Sensation Keenan Cahill Battles Rare Disorder

Keenan Cahill doesn't let his genetic disorder get in the way of his dream.

ByABC News
November 23, 2010, 4:19 PM

Nov. 24, 2010 — -- Lip-syncing isn't always a faux pas.

At least that's the conclusion 15-year-old Chicago native Keenan Cahill has come to after becoming an Internet sensation through his YouTube channel that features videos of the teen mouthing the words to the top hits.

"I started three years ago, when I got my Mac with a webcam in it," Cahill, who is a sophomore in high school, told ABCNews.com. "I did it to put myself out there and to see what would happen and where it would go."

And where it has gone is viral. Cahill's YouTube channel boasts nearly 200,000 subscribers and has been viewed tens of millions of times. The teen has even appeared on E!'s program "Chelsea Lately" and his taping of 50 Cent's new song "Down on Me" featured a cameo of none other than the famed rapper himself.

"It was a total surprise," said Cahill of 50 Cent's drop-in. "Now this is what I'm known for."

Cahill is also know for a rare genetic disorder that affects the way he looks.

He credits his rise to stardom to pop singer Katy Perry, whose song "Teenage Dream" he featured on his site. Few people had seen the video before Perry herself tweeted, "I heart you" to the teen's Twitter handle in September.

"The numbers started boosting up and up and up," Cahill said.

The video has been viewed more than 18 million times since its Aug. 28 posting. His most recent recording, a lip-sync performance of Will Smith's daughter Willow's hit "Whip My Hair," was viewed more than 200,000 times in one day.

But Cahill has garnered attention not only for his eccentric performances but also because of his unique appearance.

Cahill has a rare genetic disorder known as Maroteaux Lamy Syndrome, which in some cases, including this teen's, results in individuals developing a dwarf-like appearance.