Making child prodigies

Does exceptional talent at a young age come from nurturing, or is it in the blood?
Following a group of extraordinarily gifted children from across Australia, this series explores what it takes to be a child prodigy.

Prodigies are a rare phenomenon – awe-inspiring, yet barely understood. In Australia, there are less than 4,000 exceptionally gifted children under the age of 12, and of those, it’s estimated that less than a hundred could be considered real prodigies.

This 6 part series takes five children who excel in an area of the arts or sciences and asks  – What does it take to be a child prodigy?  We unpack what it takes to become one, what drives them, and what family conditions maximise their potential.

Produced by Screentime for ABC Australia.

ABC Sydney with James Valentine. Radio interview with Alan D. Thompson. 29 May, 2018.
LISTEN to the radio interview:

ABC Melbourne. Radio interview with Alan D. Thompson. 28 May, 2018.
LISTEN to the radio interview:

6PR Perth. Radio interview with Alan D. Thompson. 29 May, 2018.
LISTEN to the radio interview:


“These prodigies really are the peak of humanity. They’ve got the empathy, the courage, the ethics, the drive and the vision to pull us into the future. These could be the children who could take us to Mars or ensure we have equitable distribution of income or program our robots or redesign our leisure time.”

Joys and trials of raising a gifted child – or even a child prodigy (SMH)

Prodigy coach Alan Thompson says gifted kids don’t need pushing from parents (ABC)

Making Child Prodigies: Meet the 11-year-old who sells paintings for $50,000 (ABC)

Callum the Heavy Metal Kid stars in new ABC-TV doco about prodigies (Canberra)

Our Pick of free to air TV: Making Child Prodigies (SMH)

Screening times
Episode 1 – Tuesday 29 May 2018 @ 8:00pm
Episode 2 – Tuesday 5 June 2018 @ 8:00pm
Episode 3 – Tuesday 12 June 2018 @ 8:00pm
Episode 4 – Tuesday 19 June 2018 @ 8:00pm
Episode 5 – Tuesday 26 June 2018 @ 8:00pm
Episode 6 – Tuesday 3 July 2018 @ 8:00pm

Watch all six episodes again, subject to ABC availability.