Kids Love Lambeth
Kids Love Lambeth is a registered charity. It was founded, in 2005, by Evgeny Goremykin when he realised that too few children had consistent access to activity and almost no experience of classical ballet. His long term aim was to grow a vocational Russian Ballet school which would be inclusive and accessible. He saw the charity as a vital means of encouraging awareness not just of ballet but also of the opportunity to be part of that school, LRBS.
Kids Love Lambeth (KLL) teaches and performs Russian classical ballet in schools in Lambeth. All children who are touched by the work of the charity are invited back, without exception, to London Russian Ballet School for subsidised lessons. LRBS is the affiliated not for profit school of the charity. The two now work together to make ballet accessible to all and to broaden horizons through the experience of ballet and classical music. The consequent social and educational benefits are many.
KLL works with a number of schools, offering them after school ballet clubs, either on their own premises or in the studios of LRBS. The charity much prefers to bring the children into LRBS where they may be taught in a proper ballet studio. This produces more positive results and has a stronger impact on the children. The difficulty of transport to LRBS does make this goal difficult to achieve on occasion. Indeed, it is a factor that KLL always has to bear in mind, many children are unable to take part in a club unless they can be brought to attend it and returned back to their own school.
KLL also gives talks during the year in schools to inspire interest in ballet and encourage participation. Talks in schools is an ongoing activity. With the development of LRBS facilities to include an outreach performance space and tuition centre KLL believes it will be able to bring more young children to enjoy the facilities of the school. All performance work will be as in schools but hopefully in much better facilities of the new premises. This will result in minimising the aspects of difficult to undertake and expensive outreach work and it will create the better opportunity to understand the concepts of training and performance together with the hard work and dedication that go into them. Classes could be watched as well to encourage participation and inclusion - this forms part of the innovative design on the new building. KLL would like to see all those it works with encouraged to enter LRBS as a cultural and artistic centre to which they belong.
The teachers and performers of KLL are the staff and students of LRBS. Many amongst the young audience have never seen ballet. The young performers provide role models for these children and may be an inspiration for them to try ballet. We encourage the young boys of LRBS, in particular, to perform in an effort for other young boys to see ballet as a difficult physical activity. In most cases the majority of the audience are moved, and sometimes, thrilled to see a classical ballet performance in their school hall. This non-elitist, inclusive approach where Tchaikovsky and the Nutcracker are presented in the School Hall, underpins the basic tenets of both the charity and school: to make ballet, performed to the highest standards, a part of life. It should be available to all, regardless of their means and delivered without compromise.
The charity and school wish to engage children from all backgrounds in ballet and music. Learning a disciplined art form, such as classical ballet, has great personal benefits. These are not just the obvious physical rewards produced by ballet in terms of improved co-ordination, posture, stamina, flexibility and strength but also the mental benefits of increased powers of concentration, musicality and memory. Improvements are seen in both boys and girls through self-discipline, self-respect, polite behaviour and the ability to work either individually with confidence or in a group.
Performances are taken into schools regardless of any club affiliation. There may be 200-350 children watching any one performance. In 2011 over 1800 children in schools were able to watch a classical ballet performance, often with a spectacular reaction beyond even the expectations of the teachers. The charity is very serious about the quality of these performances and the need to inspire children if they are to share this love of classical ballet and music. Performances for schools are rehearsed with same fervour as for the theatre. Russian theatre costumes are worn to the delight of the young audience. LRBS students are taught to respect their audience and their stage wherever and whomever it may be.
A performance is introduced with an invitation to all children who watch to come to LRBS and receive subsidised lessons. The children who come to the school are free to pursue further tuition either for personal pleasure or for serious vocational training. Students from the School, many of whom attend as a result of outreach work by KLL, number over 235 children. This does not include adult amateur or vocational students. More than 80% of these children are subsidised. They are encouraged to attend more than once a week if they are able to do so and express the desire. 95% of the vocational students are assisted. Opportunity to train seriously is made available from the ages of nine years upwards regardless of means. All are encouraged to watch rehearsals and other classes in order to feel that they belong to a school with a purpose.
This opportunity to train as a classical ballet dancer is something manychildren might either never have considered or have thought was impossible for them. Many of the children who now train vocationally at LRBS and dance with KLL, do so as a result of previous outreach work. Some students now train vocationally six days a week after school, precisely because the door was opened to them by the work of the charity and subsequent access to the school. These students are proud to share their work and dedication with other children. The school maintains a set of principles for the children in the school at all times which are certainty of attitude, expectation of high standards, politeness, dedication and hard work.
LRBS performs regularly throughout the year at the Britten Theatre in the Royal College of Music. At any one performance free seats are given by Kids Love Lambeth to 50 children from local schools who attend with their parents at no cost. KLL and LRBS also perform regularly for other charities, for example, the performance for Trinity Hospice is an annual event.
Requirements of Kids Love Lambeth
Each outreach performance costs around £500 to produce. Funds are needed to cover the costs of transportation of the stage, flooring, costumes, music and lighting to and from these performances, together with administrative work.
We need assistance with transport from schools at a distance from LRBS to bring their pupils for after school lessons on a regular basis. Other families would attend performances if facilities were similarly provided.
We need a new floor for 2012 to lay down for use in schools. In addition, vital repairs need to be carried out on the portable stage used for performances such as those held at Trinity Hospice.
If you feel as strongly as we do about the importance of our work and you would like to support us, you may do so by making a donation towards any of our projects. Please download and complete the KIDS LOVE LAMBETH DONATION FORM or contact below:
Kids Love Lambeth
42 Clapham Manor Street
London SW4 6DZ
0044 207 498 0498