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“So who won?” one of our guests asked. She had arrived late and the show was already over.

“Won?” I asked, confused.

“I know!” she agreed. “I was shocked. Latika Vihar and a COMPETITION???”

“But it wasn’t!” I said. “It was a talent SHOW.”

Stage backdrop for talent show - white hangings, purple drapes

“See?” I said. “It says so right there!”

And so it was.

Many in the line-up were familiar faces – children we’ve watched – literally – grow up here at Latika Vihar:

Teenage boy and girl performing a disco dance

This group, for example, started out as young members and are now volunteers, teaching a new generation of little ones all the dance moves they learned from their years at Latika . . .

Young dancing girl gazing at her partner (off camera)

. . . though perhaps not each and every move? (I suspect some young love blossoming here!)

Swati and her faithful troop of actors performed with their customary style and panache:

Girl dressed as policewoman passes two junior policemen

and then quickly changed costumes for their dance performance:

Girl leaning forward, hands on hips, in dance move








which was memorable because Swati, always the recognized star of every show, graciously gave place to some of the younger girls this time . . . paving the way for a new generation, giving other children the chance to grow in both grace and confidence – just as she had:

Girl in blue, smiling, dancing

Girl in red, dancing, looking backward in a fetching way!

At Latika Vihar’s talent shows, there is always a new discovery – a child no one has spotted yet, but who is just waiting for the right moment to steal the show.

Little girl with down syndrome dancing

I saw this little one bopping to the beat long before the show actually started and I thought it would be wise to keep an eye on her.

GIrl with Down Syndrome following the teacher's moves

And sure enough, there she was half-way into the performance, self-assigned to enhance the dance teacher’s modeling for the kids on stage – where would those little performers be without her reinforcement of the teacher’s moves???

Watching these lovely, talented children reminded me of what it is I love so much about Latika Vihar. Here, everyone matters. Everyone gets a chance. You don’t have to be the prettiest or the smartest or the best in English. You just have to show up. You just have to be there. Like everyone else, you will get swept up in the excitement. You will find your talent. Oh, believe me: you will shine.

Group of children singing at talent show



Showing 2 comments
  • Shipra

    Latika Vihar rocks!!!!!!

  • Dr Charu Miglani

    Incredible pictures!
    I loved the line ‘here everyone matters,everyone gets a chance’.
    In this dog eat dog world how badly we need such places where you are loved just for being yourself.How beautiful life would be without the pressure of becoming the smartest,brightest,richest…..Disabled or not we all need a soft/bright spot under the sun.
    But of course a differently able person needs a differently trained eye to look at him/her,a differently trained teacher to hone his/her talent.
    The children in the pictures are brimming with confidence,their eyes full of hope speaking volumes about the hard work which must have gone into making them feel that they really matter.
    They have probably found their bright spot in Latika Vihar where love indeed is unconditional!

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