Prodigy

11-year-old composer shrugs off comparison to Mozart ahead of her opera premiere

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Sometimes, Alma Deutscher gets ideas for melodies while she’s waking up or falling asleep or dreaming. But other times, the violin composer who has an opera version of Cinderella premiering in Vienna this year hears them when she’s jumping rope, or at least, swinging a jump rope around in her hand and telling stories in her head.

Deutscher is just 11 years old, and the jump rope seems to bring out a certain part of her genius.

“Getting the tunes for me, actually that’s the easy bit. Then having to sit down and develop it into a proper piece and combining it with other melodies in a coherent way and polishing it, that’s a really difficult bit for me,” Deutscher told the BBC in an interview this week.

Deutscher began playing the piano at age 3 and the violin at age 3, and creating her own compositions at age 4. Today, she shrugs off comparisons to other musical prodigies like Mozart.

“Well I actually think that if I was just a little Mozart it would be a little bit boring because I would just write exactly what Mozart had written before,” she said. “I think I would prefer to be a little Alma.” Watch the interview below.

See Deutscher’s full interview with the BBC’s Today Programme.

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