Friday, 29 May 2009

Children and Britain's Got Talent

I have a confession - I am a closet Britain's Got Talent addict! It is affirming, inspiring and sometimes just hilarious. Twice this week, I have left evening engagements early in order to get home in time to watch at least the second part of the semi-finals and I am already very excited about tomorrow's final. But I have to say tonight I began to feel really uncomfortable about the number of children left in the competition especially after 10 year old Holly Steel burst into tears during her song.

I have absolutely no doubt that she was exhausted (she didn't come on until 9pm and at 10 that is a late night) plus standing in front of that huge audience it must have been very daunting, but to be reduced to tears not once or twice but a number of times just made me think that this is wrong/borderline cruel. When young Aidan won tonight he cried tears, albeit of joy, but earlier this week another young girl was reduced to tears when she didn't win the judges vote. Nobody likes to see other people cry, especially children, and therefore I am beginning to think that some of these kids need better protection from the producers of the programme: it feels that the duty of care towards children that you'd expect from such a high profile programme has been totally forgotten.

I am sure there will be plenty of tears tomorrow but I just hope they are caused by the emotion of the event not the agony of the young performers, as was demonstrated so publicly tonight.


ak23566 said...

I felt genuine pity for the poor little girl. The "voting public" and the judges really did not do her any favours putting her through to the final when she will have to go through it all again.

Given the clip of her breaking down was then a major item on News at Ten (gaining the show lots of free publicity) one has to question the judges real motives. Surely they must know the pressure this would place on her young shoulders and the very high (almost inevitable) probablility of her losing control again tomorrow when the pressure will be so much higher.

There is no way they will allow her to win as they cannot take the risk of her ghostng on live TV at the Royal Variety Show. Why, therefore, put her through the trauma again?

You are right, this is bordering on exploitation and her parents have as much responsibility to stop it happening as anyone involved in the prodution team.

Tomorrow when the war began said...

that is a sad thing indeed. children are not adults yet, and the public expectation should take that into account.