Interest Groups & Activities
The London Latvian Centre hosts the following interest groups and activities:
The London Latvian Choir was founded by the Latvian composer and conductor Alberts Jērums in August 1948. Since then, the choir has taken part in all the Latvian Song Festivals in the UK and Europe, the 5th Latvian Song Festival in Toronto, Canada, in 1970, the World Federation of Free Latvians’ Song Festival in Gotland, Sweden, in 1979, the 20th Latvian Song Festival in Rīga in 1990, and the 1st and 2nd European Festivals of Latvian Culture (in Brussels and Dublin). The choir has sung in almost all Independence Day celebrations (18th November) in London and has represented Latvians at numerous international events. The choir also organises regular concerts either independently or in cooperation with other choirs.
The present members of the choir are predominantly representatives of the younger generation of Latvians, born and raised in Latvia – just like it was 70 years ago. Choral singing is just as important to Latvians now as it was back then, giving Latvians living in the UK the opportunity, while working together, to develop relationships with other compatriots, to maintain the Latvian language and traditions, and confirm their faith in the future of the nation. Three members of one family conduct the choir: Lilija Zobens, her husband, Leslie East, and their daughter Andra.
The choir had the honour of taking part in the Song and Dance Festivals in Rīga in 2013 and 2018, and in the concert performance of the rock opera “’Lāčplēsis” in Rīga on the 8th November 2018.
Why sing in this unique choir?
- To become acquainted with a new, totally different and world-renowned choral repertoire, to make new friends and enjoy singing in a friendly and creative environment...
- To take part in diverse Latvian social occasions in London...
- To represent Latvia and Latvian culture in various international events in the UK...
- To travel to other places in the UK, Latvia and elsewhere...
New singers (Latvian and non-Latvian) are always welcome to the London Latvian Choir! Rehearsals take place on Wednesday evenings at the London Latvian House, 72 Queensborough Terrace, from 7.00 until 9.00 pm. The conductors use both Latvian and English, so you don’t need to understand Latvian! If you would like to give the LLK a try, please contact the conductor, Lilija Zobens, on 07749049422 or [email protected].
The day starts at 10 am and finishes at 1.50 pm.
Currently there are 80 children attending the classes. They are divided into 11 age groups and the typical day consists of 4 subjects. Children can learn the Latvian language and literature, geography, craft, history, folklore, improve their spoken and written language, play, sing and dance.
Most of the study materials used are published in Latvia in recent years. Daugavas Vanagi offers the opportunity to use their library which has many recently published books and magazines, including Latvian literature for children.
If you would like to find out more about the London Latvian School come and visit us (by prior arrangement). Joining the school is a wonderful way to meet other latvian families and make new friends.
The London Latvian School is always looking for new team members that have knowledge of teaching subjects related to Latvia. If you are ready for a new challenge you are welcome to join us.
Classes take place at: Latvian Welfare Fund - 72 Queensborough Terrace, London, W2 3SH (nearest tube stations are Queensway and Bayswater)
For more information visit www.londonaslatviesuskola.co.uk & www.facebook.com/londonaslatviesuskola
“Londona Dejo” has taken part in many international festivals all over the world, including Greece, Germany, Sweden, Ireland, and, of course, Latvia, as well as many British festivals, including Dance Around the World and the Thames Festival.
The group regularly takes part in Latvian community events here in Britain, pleasing audiences with their traditional Latvian dance.
Dance rehearsals take place every Tuesday evening from 7.30-9.45pm at the London Latvian House, 72 Queensborough Terrace, London W2 3SH.
Ilze Iesalniece, group leader
077 0611 4044
Jautrais Pāris was founded in February 2016. Although we are fairly new, we have already gained a great deal of experience and have performed many times here in the UK, in dance festivals in Germany and Canada, and at the Centenary song and dance festival in Latvia in 2018.
We are full of joy and energy, always ready to grow and learn something new, and to dance, laugh and just enjoy the here and now.
We always welcome new participants, age (although we are considered an “adult” rather than young people’s group) and dance experience are unimportant.
Leader: Anna Auziņa (07785 792247)
Rehearsals: Sunday afternoons from 16.15 - 18.30 in the main hall at 72 Queensborough Terrace
Participation fee £10/month
E-mail: [email protected]
The classes are open to anyone and are made up of students with varying levels of knowledge of the Latvian language. They come from a wide age range and with various motivations for learning. New students are always welcome, but it is probably best for absolute beginners to start in September.
The textbooks we are using are “A1 Laipa” and “A2 Laipa,” published by the Latviešu valodas aģentūra (LVA) (Latvian language agency), as well as the accompanying workbooks and e-materials.
To get more information or if you wish to join the group please e-mail Mrs Ruta Abakuka on [email protected]
The library is open on Wednesdays 5.30-7.00 PM, on Fridays 7.00-9.00 PM and on Latvian School Sundays 10.00 AM - 2.00 PM
To get more information, please email the librarian Ms Solvita Jaunkampe on [email protected]
Balzambārs is a volunteer lead organisation, which offers a place for creative expressions and organszes events for Latvians and their foreign friends.
Balzambārs is open to 72QT Guests and visitors two evenings a week: Fridays and Saturdays from 6pm to 11pm. In addition the bar is open during special occasions and when events are being held in the guest house's function rooms.
Delicious Latvian-style dinner is available: Fridays and Saturdays 7.00pm to 10.00pm. Bookings via Eventbrite.
(We offer vegetarian/vegan options, please email to [email protected] to inform us)
PRICES: Soup £4.00 Dessert £4.00 Main £8.00
ALL 3 COURSES: £14.00 (save £2)
Balzambārs premises are also available for private party bookings. Details, arrangements, food, canapé and drink requirements can be discussed.
We look forward to seeing you!
To get more info, please visit: www.facebook.com/zapteee
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