Christmas For Kids
Christmas For Kids
Since 2009, Christmas for Kids has provided interactive, multi-sensory musical theatre performances in children's hospices across England at Christmas time, totally free of charge. Our tailor-made shows incorporate singing, instrumental music, interactive storytelling and puppetry. We allow for individual children's needs and abilities, and give those with communication difficulties an opportunity to engage and express themselves.
We are passionate about bringing shows of high artistic merit to children and their families who cannot leave residential care to attend the theatre due to life-limiting conditions. We focus on creating a stimulating and inclusive experience for the children and their families, incorporating the following: musical instruments and vocal harmonies; storytelling in a fun and playful way; puppetry and audience interaction; props including light stimuli, and costumes with carefully chosen textures and fabrics. We have learned how important one-to-one interaction is for the children, and have incorporated instruments for them to play and moments where they can interact with and touch our puppets.
Our shows are co-written by Gareth Tempest (West End actor and workshop writer) and Claire Sundin (West End singer and children’s workshop leader) with musical direction and musical arrangements by Sue Appleby (West End singer, musician and musical director). They are performed by small teams of carefully chosen professional actor-musicians and singers, who have experience of working with children, led by Sue and Claire.
The feedback we receive from the hospice care teams whom we visit is extremely positive, and the carers are often surprised by the level of engagement and communication we manage to achieve from even agitated or withdrawn children. Parents often comment on how 'right' our performance style and content is for the very unique needs of their children.
Christmas For Kids aims to:
- To tour our interactive, mutli-sensory theatre show to children's hospices in the UK, free of charge. In 2017, we plan to tour three teams of three actors to 45 hospice venues.
- To present shows of high artistic merit and provide entertainment for life-limited children and those with PMLD who are too sick to visit the theatre at Christmas time.
- To engage with and stimulate our audience of special needs children, their families and carers.
- To employ our actors and creative team for five-week contracts each year.
- To develop further the skills of our directors, performers and writers, particularly in puppetry and Makaton, enabling them to engage with our target audience more effectively than ever before.
Established: September 2009
Registered Charity Number: 1162812
Board members: 7
Part time staff: 3
Phone number: 07790 607715
Address: 114 Paxton Road, London SE23 2QHView charity accounts on the Charity Commission website