“The School of Classical Russian Ballet wants the best for each and every one of us, and all students are given equal and fair attention under this strict ballet regime.”
The School of Classical Russian Ballet graduate, who danced and now attends a Russell Group University

The goal of our school has always been to offer access to life-changing Russian Classical Ballet training and excellent academic education regardless of individual financial circumstances or of background. The principle of social inclusion is fundamental to the identity of the school as is providing the highest levels of Russian classical ballet training to students from widely diverse backgrounds.

The School of Classical Russian Ballet believes that no student or young child should be denied the opportunity to learn and train through a lack of financial resources and we have been offering subsidies to those who needed financial assistance from the foundation of the school. Over eight years this has developed into Opening Doors which provides bursaries for full time students to enable them to complete their ballet training and academic education. The School also ensures that young children have access to affordable recreational ballet classes. Many families in the borough require financial assistance to make children’s ballet a reality for their children. We are the only school to make children’s ballet as accessible as full-time training and regard it as a further essential component in breaking down barriers to engagement in ballet and the performing arts.

Fostering engagement with and participation in the local community is very important for the School of Classical Russian Ballet which is situated in one of London’s most deprived boroughs. Without a firm relationship with our local community in Lambeth, our long-term goal of breaking down barriers to entry into ballet training would be impossible. We are immensely proud of our outreach work, the Lambeth Schools Enterprise and the Young Lambeth Performers (YLP). We perform for over 1500 children each year in Lambeth alone and we provide ballet training and gymnastics to over 325 local school children each week in local primary schools. In 2019 we created a performing group of young children, the Young Lambeth Performers, who perform on stage with our students and
principal artists of the Bolshoi Ballet.

Watching ballet and hearing classical music in a theatre is out of reach and, as a result, all too often out of mind for many young children and people whether due to financial, geographical, or other circumstances. The School of Classical Russian Ballet values the power of theatre and culture in society for good and sees it as source of inspiration which may change the lives and thinking of young people for the better. The school is, therefore, very proud of its long-standing tradition of performing free of charge for thousands of young children and members of the local community in theatres, such as Cadogan Hall where over 150 children attend every performance for free and in different outreach venues such as the Oval Cricket Ground in London for 500 children at each performance.

The school has taken ballet to thousands who would never otherwise have had the opportunity to enjoy this wonderful art form. An extraordinary but natural development of this tradition occurred in 2019 when we travelled to an area of North Manchester where there had never been a ballet performance.

We performed for over 1000 young people in four performances. These were so successful and the young audiences were so inspired that we have been asked to return again in 2020 not just to Manchester but also to Stoke-on-Trent. These performances are often described as magical for a very genuine reason. They have a truly inspiring influence on all who attend and it is easy to under estimate the force of an art form seen for the first time. To be present in these performances is often very moving and reminds us how moving all theatre performance should be. We remain eager to bring world-class ballet both in the theatre and in outreach to more children and local communities in 2020.

Find out more about our Outreach Programme

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