Singer Niall Horan's mother Maura Gallagher has said she is very proud of her son, who performed for US President Joe Biden in the White House as part of the traditional shamrock ceremony.

"I didn't sleep a wink. He told me it was happening and I was so nervous for him," she said.

"He messaged me late last night, but I didn't say a word to anyone" said.

The Mullingar star performed four songs in front of dozens of dignitaries, which included Taoiseach Leo Varadkar, Sinn Féin Leader Mary Lou McDonald, and former House speaker Nancy Pelosi.

Taking to the stage, Mr Horan wished everyone a "Happy Paddy's Day" before reminding the audience that Paddy was spelt with two ds, not two ts.

"Thanks very much for having me here," he added.

"As a proud Irishman who travels the world, it’s a major honour for me to be here.

He opened his performance with his new single Heaven, before playing This Town, the first song Mr Horan released as a solo artist. It was written about his hometown of Mullingar.

Niall Horan and his mother Maura Gallagher

"When I sat down to write my first album, the first thing that came to my mind was my hometown of Mullingar," he told those gathered in the White House.

Mr Horan became emotional as he explained to guests that the song was about emigration.

"It's a song about emigration, about traveling the world and knowing that I'll always have Mullingar to go back to. The chorus basically says it, if the whole world was watching, I'd still dance with you, and it's about my hometown," he said.

Mr Biden later joined Mr Horan on the small stage, embracing him and addressing the intimate audience.

"It’s amazing what song does, and you do it so well. Come back anytime," President Biden told him.

Ms Gallagher said her son is "absolutely buzzing" after the performance.

"What an honour. He's met President Michael D Higgins, he met Britain's Queen Elizabeth and now this. I'm just so emotional," he said.

"I'm told he mentioned my sister Claire and her family. She emigrated to Queens a long time ago, but I haven't been able to see anything. My phone hasn't stopped."

Ahead of the performance, Mr Horan posted a video to social media, saying he could not spend St Patrick's Day alone.

Mr Horan said: "Hi guys, it’s me. I just wanted to wish you all a very happy Saint Patrick’s Day from the White House from me."

Mr Horan then panned the camera to reveal President Biden standing next to him.

"And me too. I’m here at the White House, I hang out here once in a while and I’m glad he’s here," President Biden said, patting Mr Horan on the arm.

"Happy Saint Patrick’s Day," they both said.

Mr Horan's mother said her son is taking it all in his stride.

"He's the type of lad who can talk to anyone. He knows how to handle himself. He was very proud to be there," she said.

World fame, sell-out gigs, and singing in the White House. No matter what, Ms Gallagher says: "he's still my baby".