Occasionally, children have an extraordinary amount of well-honed talent from a very young age; these children are known as prodigies. The following artists are child prodigies who have fascinated audiences, and given impressive and inspiring performances from a young age.
Arguably the most famous musical child prodigy is Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart. Born in Austria, in 1756, Mozart gave his debut piano recital and composed his first two works, Andante and Allegro, at the age of four.
Pianist Frederic Chopin’s first compositions were published when he was only seven years old. By age eight, he was a highly sought after concert pianist. According to the New Acoustic Society, he preferred to “perform in small settings, giving relatively few public performances throughout the world.”
Bear was just five-years-old when she composed and released her first album. The critics fell in love, and called her the next Mozart. To date, she’s composed more than 350 pieces, recorded six albums, performed at sold out concerts, and will “happily write a song about anything you suggest,” according to NPR.org.
The piano isn’t the only instrument that produces prodigies. Yo-yo Ma is a world famous cellist, and he first performed for audiences when he was just five-years-old. At age seven, he performed for former president John F. Kennedy.
Julie Andrews and Other Singing Prodigies
The teen years seem to be the ‘coming of age’ period for most singing prodigies. Vocalist Julie Andrews first sang for audiences when she was twelve years old, while both Stevie Wonder and Michael Jackson had their first number one hits as solo artists when they were thirteen.
All Children Have the Potential to Be Great
Practice makes perfect. If you recognize a talent within your child, nurture it. Award-winning composer Marvin Hamlisch, known for having won an Emmy, an Oscar, a Tony, a Grammy, two Golden Globes, and the Pulitzer Prize, was educated at Julliard from age seven. He worked hard to become one of the greatest composers in the world.
Practice and training are just as important as raw, natural talent. Yuto Miyazawa was named “The Youngest Professional Guitarist” by Guinness Book of World Records when he was just eight-years-old. That was after four years of professional lessons, so if you want your child to earn a similar title, you’ll need to find suitable guitar lessons for them.
Some people are clearly born with organic talent in one form or another, yet even they must practice, take lessons, work with coaches, and participate in whatever form of training is appropriate to their area of talent. Training and education are keystones to creating a great body of work for any musician, especially one who is just beginning. One form of creativity supports another, as one type of knowledge supports another. Therefore, knowledge and creativity have a symbiotic relationship that maximizes the capacity for musical genius.
Being the parent of a musically inclined child means being their number one supporter as well as their biggest fan. Providing a gifted child with various avenues for developing their talents, and growing as musical artists, will help maximize the child’s abilities. Who knows? Maybe you have the next prodigy in your midst.