At 11, composer about to premiere first full opera


VIENNA (AP) — Alma Deutscher is a composer, virtuoso pianist and concert violinist who wrote her first sonata five years ago and whose first full opera will have its world premiere next month — and she’s only 11.

Time-worn associations with Mozart, who wrote his first symphony at age 8, may come to mind. So can questions whether Alma’s unique talent could get in the way of a happy childhood. But fresh from rehearsal, Alma laughs dismissively.

“I think for me it’s more interesting to be Alma” instead of Mozart, she says. And being special “is really normal because I don’t know anything else.”

When not living music, the child prodigy from Dorking, England, is busy scraping her knees climbing trees, meeting friends on the playground, swimming and many other activities that an 11-year-old would enjoy.

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