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I believe the children are our future and I agree with all Whitney Houston sings in the rest of Greatest Love of All. Although I may not have any of my own yet, I find the little ones intriguing.
Most people do, and this most probably includes judges and fans of SA’s Got Talent.
In a talent show that is open to all ages, it is always exciting when a young contestant does the un-expected and outshines everyone else on stage.
Take for instance, last year’s winner, Botlale Boikanyo, who wowed fans from the delivery of her first poem – and went on to clinch the top spot.
She was only ten at the time, yet had incredible stage presence that would have put seasoned performers to shame.
Even her proud parents could not fully explain where she got the daring attitude that everyone fell in love with.
The last time we spoke to her she was preparing to go to New York for some scheduled performances.
We are now in a new season, meeting acts from all over the country who are also trying to win SA’s Got Talent.
Among them is 11-year-old Nadia van der Westhuizen (pictured) from Cape Town.
Like Botlale, she is an amazing stage performer and, to spice up things, shares the stage with her grandfather.
“I entered to try and win, but if I don’t win I’ll be just glad that I got the experience,” she said.
As she always sings with her grandfather, Nadia naturally thought it best to go with him to the audition.
“My grandfather told me to take a chance and see if I can win SA’s Got Talent. I am always happy when I sing,” she revealed.
As you will see, she is very talented and her grandpa was onto something.
This is an interesting turn of events in light of Botlale’s success. While some people believe that Justin Bieber is indeed talented, others are of the notion that the cute boy image he had is what at first got him ahead in the industry.
No matter how hardcore we may be, we are instinctively suckers for the younger ones.
This in turn may cloud our judgement because it becomes a case of emotion over objectivity.
Not to take anything from Botlale or any other young contestants, but I do wonder if the response would have been the same had I been the one that stepped onto that stage with her poems.
I don’t think so.
There is something extra special about a talented child performer.
If I am right then SA’s Got Talent has to fine-tune its criterion regarding the ages of the entrants. While we love the children (and believe that they are our future) we should gently let them know how brutal the world is out there.
If Nadia is good at 11, she should go through based on that, and not on the fact that she is young. The name of the show is SA’s Got Talent and not SA’s Young Got Talent. Let’s be objective about this as we prepare to crown Mzansi’s next best thing.
• SA’s Got Talent airs tonight at 8.30pm on e.tv.