Gifted Children


The documentary Private Lives of Gifted Children which screened in the Documentary New Zealand strand gives a behind the scenes view of the lives of several prodigiously talented children.

The impact having a gifted child has on families is a major theme of the documentary. To the outside world it may appear the gifted child has a charmed life and is perhaps someone to be envied. This documentary explores the realities of their lives….the lessons, the practice, the pressures and what might be sacrificed in order for them to achieve. It explores where their special talents might have come from, the role their parents play, the pressures that early success can bring and the reality of children competing, performing and studying at an adult, or nearly adult level.

The documentary deals mostly with children who are exceptionally talented. ‘Gifted’ has started to take on a new meaning as within education circles it now refers to that echelon of children who are academically gifted…this is usually taken to be kids who have an IQ of 135+ and the exceptionally gifted have an IQ of 160+. A normal IQ is about 100.

The children profiled are Allie Rout (10) of Howick who is the N.Z. ‘novice ladies’ ice skating champion.  11 year old Louis Gutry described by his principal as the “brightest child she has ever come across”.  Puchen Wang (13) a chess phenomenon from Mt Eden and Salina Fisher (10) an accomplished pianist, violinist and composer playing with the Christchurch Symphony Orchestra when she was 9.



Promotional Trailer

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Production Details

Producer: Philippa Mossman

Exec producer: Tony Manson

Director: Jill Graham

Researcher: Jill Graham

Offline editor: Emma Patterson

Production manager: Kate Cresswell

Production coordinator: Bronwyn Bezuidenhout

Camera: Clint Bruce, Reuben Pillsbury

Sound: Ant Nevison, Trevor Chalmers

Production accountant: Glenda Paterson

Funded by: New Zealand on Air & TVNZ