Prodigies

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Ricordanza
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Prodigies

Post by Ricordanza » Mon Nov 06, 2017 12:08 pm

Last night, 60 Minutes' concluding segment was about Alma Deutscher, the 12-year-old British musical prodigy:

https://www.cbsnews.com/news/the-12-yea ... is-mozart/

Clearly, Alma's gifts as a composer AND violinist AND pianist are extraordinary, and I hope she develops those talents as she matures.

But it did raise a question in my mind about other recent prodigies. A few years ago, 60 Minutes did a segment about another child composer, Jay Greenberg. He was also compared to Mozart. Whatever happened to him? I assume he's now in his twenties. Does anyone know?

Lance
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Re: Prodigies

Post by Lance » Mon Nov 06, 2017 12:19 pm

I did find this, however, it speaks of Alma and is supposed to be Jay Greenberg. If you go to Wikipedia, you can find out information about Jay Greenberg (composer, not psychoanalyst.)

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Jay_Greenberg_(composer)
Ricordanza wrote:
Mon Nov 06, 2017 12:08 pm
Last night, 60 Minutes' concluding segment was about Alma Deutscher, the 12-year-old British musical prodigy:

https://www.cbsnews.com/news/the-12-yea ... is-mozart/

Clearly, Alma's gifts as a composer AND violinist AND pianist are extraordinary, and I hope she develops those talents as she matures.

But it did raise a question in my mind about other recent prodigies. A few years ago, 60 Minutes did a segment about another child composer, Jay Greenberg. He was also compared to Mozart. Whatever happened to him? I assume he's now in his twenties. Does anyone know?
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John F
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Re: Prodigies

Post by John F » Mon Nov 06, 2017 12:20 pm

According to Wikipedia, he's now studying at the University of Auckland in New Zealand. Haven't heard any of his music.
John Francis

jbuck919
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Re: Prodigies

Post by jbuck919 » Mon Nov 06, 2017 3:20 pm

There will never be another Mozart. All the greatest composers were prodigies, but that was then and this is now. Prodigious talent is even rarer than absolute pitch. I don't even know where they would go these days to avoid total frustration.


There's nothing remarkable about it. All one has to do is hit the right keys at the right time and the instrument plays itself.
-- Johann Sebastian Bach

Belle
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Re: Prodigies

Post by Belle » Mon Nov 06, 2017 4:46 pm

Ricordanza wrote:
Mon Nov 06, 2017 12:08 pm
Last night, 60 Minutes' concluding segment was about Alma Deutscher, the 12-year-old British musical prodigy:

https://www.cbsnews.com/news/the-12-yea ... is-mozart/

Clearly, Alma's gifts as a composer AND violinist AND pianist are extraordinary, and I hope she develops those talents as she matures.

But it did raise a question in my mind about other recent prodigies. A few years ago, 60 Minutes did a segment about another child composer, Jay Greenberg. He was also compared to Mozart. Whatever happened to him? I assume he's now in his twenties. Does anyone know?
This young girl obviously has "Savant syndrome", or similar, and doesn't appear normal to me (as the mother of 4 children).

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Savant_syndrome

Look at her dilated pupils (perhaps these are contact lenses), her changing accents (acute Queen's English in the home and a kind of faux German in Austria!). And her flying about the backyard singing; this would disturb me as a parent, not least because of the feeling my daughter was robbed of childhood. And we don't need another Mozart; one was quite enough.

Perhaps she'll go on to become a good musician.

Ricordanza
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Re: Prodigies

Post by Ricordanza » Tue Nov 07, 2017 7:27 am

Belle wrote:
Mon Nov 06, 2017 4:46 pm
This young girl obviously has "Savant syndrome", or similar, and doesn't appear normal to me (as the mother of 4 children).
I can't claim quite the level of expertise (as the father of only one, and the grandfather of two), but I beg to differ with you. Based on the interview segments, as well as another interview of her that I saw a while ago, Alma strikes me as a girl who has no difficulty with social interactions and no intellectual defects. She is certainly more articulate than the average 12 year old.

maestrob
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Re: Prodigies

Post by maestrob » Tue Nov 07, 2017 12:30 pm

As the brother of a severely autistic man (now deceased) I would heartily agree with Ricordanza on this. Her social interactions during the interview were very normal. As for the accents, I'd say she is still developing her public persona and is experimenting with options. Nothing "idiote-savante" about that.

jbuck919
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Re: Prodigies

Post by jbuck919 » Tue Nov 07, 2017 3:46 pm

maestrob wrote:
Tue Nov 07, 2017 12:30 pm
As the brother of a severely autistic man (now deceased) I would heartily agree with Ricordanza on this. Her social interactions during the interview were very normal. As for the accents, I'd say she is still developing her public persona and is experimenting with options. Nothing "idiote-savante" about that.
No, but there was a chapter of 60 Minutes years ago when a young man was something of a virtuoso but could not count from one to five. Idiot-savantism is not a myth.

There's nothing remarkable about it. All one has to do is hit the right keys at the right time and the instrument plays itself.
-- Johann Sebastian Bach

Belle
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Re: Prodigies

Post by Belle » Tue Nov 07, 2017 4:03 pm

maestrob wrote:
Tue Nov 07, 2017 12:30 pm
As the brother of a severely autistic man (now deceased) I would heartily agree with Ricordanza on this. Her social interactions during the interview were very normal. As for the accents, I'd say she is still developing her public persona and is experimenting with options. Nothing "idiote-savante" about that.
I did not say "idiot" savant. That's the "dramatic" case mentioned in the Wiki article and it is not a myth anyway. These kinds of people have their brains wired differently from the rest of us and it's still a relatively new area of study - cognitive neuroscience.

Only time will tell if I'm right about Alma D, but the hairs stood up on the back of my neck watching her.

maestrob
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Re: Prodigies

Post by maestrob » Wed Nov 08, 2017 2:01 pm

Who said myth? Of course this condition exists, in fact 60 minutes did a segment in the recent past about just such people. I'm not disputing that at all! :) Having grown up with my brother, such people do not disturb me as much as they do others, I imagine.

Belle
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Re: Prodigies

Post by Belle » Wed Nov 08, 2017 2:30 pm

Somebody did write 'myth' but that post seems to have disappeared and that's why jbuck and myself referred to it! :?

I had autistic students when I taught and they didn't 'disturb' me as I could handle them, but it was often difficult getting through to them. One girl in particular in senior English had a brother who was smart and in an accelerated mathematics program. She believed she could be as clever as her brother and constantly quizzed me about why she got low marks for her English essays. I could never convince her of the problem; she hadn't addressed the question and only wrote one page which just told what the book or play was about. Understanding and analysing an English text and being able to write a coherent essay arguing a case is actually a skill that surprisingly few people have!! I believe it is a talent that really cannot be 'taught' - apart from the structure of an essay per se.

jbuck919
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Re: Prodigies

Post by jbuck919 » Wed Nov 08, 2017 2:43 pm

Belle wrote:
Wed Nov 08, 2017 2:30 pm
Somebody did write 'myth' but that post seems to have disappeared and that's why jbuck and myself referred to it! :?

I had autistic students when I taught and they didn't 'disturb' me as I could handle them, but it was often difficult getting through to them. One girl in particular in senior English had a brother who was smart and in an accelerated mathematics program. She believed she could be as clever as her brother and constantly quizzed me about why she got low marks for her English essays. I could never convince her of the problem; she hadn't addressed the question and only wrote one page which just told what the book or play was about. Understanding and analysing an English text and being able to write a coherent essay arguing a case is actually a skill that surprisingly few people have!! I believe it is a talent that really cannot be 'taught' - apart from the structure of an essay per se.
To which I would add that most young students cannot believe that their teachers are occasionally multiply talented. Even now, when I am only officially certified in mathematics and only substitute teach, a class will not accept my statement that the famous poem (which Belle might not know, because it is an American thing) Old Ironsides by Oliver Wendell Holmes is sarcastic. How anyone even that young interprets "Aye, tear her tattered ensign down" literally escapes me, but they won't accept the correct interpretation unless they hear it from their usual teacher.

There's nothing remarkable about it. All one has to do is hit the right keys at the right time and the instrument plays itself.
-- Johann Sebastian Bach

Belle
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Re: Prodigies

Post by Belle » Wed Nov 08, 2017 3:17 pm

It isn't just substitute teachers whom students don't believe! I had a class of Year 8 (13 y/o) become very indignant one day when I was giving them a lesson on grammar. This was the top class and I think it was about the verbs for collective nouns (my memory of it is rusty). They became very angry because they didn't speak this way and wouldn't be told it wasn't correct. We tend to think of young people as very flexible and open to new ideas but, in a sense, nothing could be further from the truth. They do have a habit of clinging on to which they know and are very prepared to have a stand up argument if they think you are wrong. And in the senior school there was just no way the Advanced students were going to accept the gentle humour of Jane Austen or the satire and religious allusions of Chaucer. And as for them not knowing a single thing about Christianity; that's a whole separate story!!

One of the biggest problems I had was teaching kids about satire and irony!! These are two quite abstract ideas which, when not taught from the beginning of high school, are available only to the brightest students after much hard labour. I suspected - and still do - that those who get it will be running things!!

lennygoran
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Re: Prodigies

Post by lennygoran » Wed Nov 08, 2017 3:32 pm

Belle wrote:
Wed Nov 08, 2017 3:17 pm
One of the biggest problems I had was teaching kids about satire and irony!! These are two quite abstract ideas which, when not taught from the beginning of high school, are available only to the brightest students after much hard labour. I suspected - and still do - that those who get it will be running things!!
Belle you might have enjoyed the Webber play we saw when in NYC-School of Rock involved some very funny teaching going on-the kids who played their own instruments were just amazing! Regards, Len :lol:

barney
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Re: Prodigies

Post by barney » Wed Nov 08, 2017 4:47 pm

Belle wrote:
Wed Nov 08, 2017 3:17 pm
One of the biggest problems I had was teaching kids about satire and irony!! These are two quite abstract ideas which, when not taught from the beginning of high school, are available only to the brightest students after much hard labour. I suspected - and still do - that those who get it will be running things!!
They already are Belle. You couldn't regard the shenanigans in Australian politics as anything but satire... :D

In the 90s I tutored in first-year philosophy at Melbourne University, one of our highest-ranked unis. The best students were brilliant, but a great mass never got it . They wanted to be told what to think, not how to think. And I have to say, I found (to my surprise) that those from the elite private schools were worst because they had been spoon-fed through secondary school. I had one girl crying in my office because she'd never had a mark as low as a B before. I explained that this was not a poor mark, but also that she didn't deserve more and what she'd have to do to get that - interact with the arguments - but she didn't improve the rest of that year.

lennygoran
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Re: Prodigies

Post by lennygoran » Wed Nov 08, 2017 4:54 pm

Ricordanza wrote:
Mon Nov 06, 2017 12:08 pm
Last night, 60 Minutes' concluding segment was about Alma Deutscher, the 12-year-old British musical prodigy:
Henry we just got back from NYC and I had a chance to watch this-absolutely amazing-wonder if her opera will get to our area after SF! Regards, Len :D

jbuck919
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Re: Prodigies

Post by jbuck919 » Wed Nov 08, 2017 5:31 pm

Incidentally, I've been on the USS Constitution (Old Ironsides), which is still in commission. It was the greatest warship of its time, built up far beyond other wooden ships. It fought in many battles and never lost one. It is always commanded by a navy captain (the equivalent of a full colonel in the other armed forces). It was saved largely because of that poem by the elder Oliver Wendell Holmes.

There's nothing remarkable about it. All one has to do is hit the right keys at the right time and the instrument plays itself.
-- Johann Sebastian Bach

Belle
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Re: Prodigies

Post by Belle » Wed Nov 08, 2017 6:59 pm

barney wrote:
Wed Nov 08, 2017 4:47 pm
Belle wrote:
Wed Nov 08, 2017 3:17 pm
One of the biggest problems I had was teaching kids about satire and irony!! These are two quite abstract ideas which, when not taught from the beginning of high school, are available only to the brightest students after much hard labour. I suspected - and still do - that those who get it will be running things!!
They already are Belle. You couldn't regard the shenanigans in Australian politics as anything but satire... :D
Don't I know it! We have a son caught up in this, feeling demoralized along with his (high level cabinet-minister) boss, who is not involved in anything to do with citizenship and trying to run a very demanding portfolio.

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