Music: Prodigious Coloratura

Last autumn the impresarios of the New York Philharmonic-Symphony Young People's Concerts hit on a bright idea: let prodigies perform before their peers. To puerile applause, they presented 8-year-old and 11-year-old pianists, a 12-year-old fiddler, a 14-year-old clarinetist. Last week they trotted out a talent which was more special and more exciting.

On to the stage of Carnegie Hall tripped demure, blonde Ellen Berg,11. In a soprano that was emotionless, usually hall-size, usually on pitch, she sang an air from Mozart's Magic Flute. Sophisticated kids and mammas gave each other sidelong looks when...

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