The Back to School Festival kicks off in Moscow on 24 August. The 33 themed venues will host scientific and creative workshops, theatrical performances and shows by Moscow performance groups. Open-air training sessions and walking excursions to city historic sites also await guests. The first day’s programme features a lot of interesting events.
At 3 pm, a children’s ballet studio will open at the festival’s Music venue. Classes will be led by teachers from a ballet school affiliated with the Bolshoi Theatre. They will teach young dancers how to move gracefully, work on oneself and overcome difficulties. Children will be able to improve their flexibility and plasticity. The classes will be held in the form of a game.
At 4.30 pm-6 pm, the venue will host the Creative Moscow excursion programme. Setting out from the animation chalet in front of the Bolshoi Theatre, guests will learn about the history of Teatralnaya Square with its three theatres – Bolshoi, Maly and Youth Theatre – and listen to interesting stories about the life of old and modern Moscow, with detailed information about the architecture of extant historical buildings.
Excursion groups will make stops in Bolshaya Dmitrovka Street – at the House of Trade Unions and at the Operetta Theatre. They will also hear the story of the Russian State Library of the Arts.
On the first day of the Back to School Festival, young Moscow artists will present the first part of the street children’s theatre series “Teachers Council” on Pushkinskaya Square. The cycle of performances tells the story of nice and sympathetic teachers who stayed children deep inside.
The characters include a kind head teacher, a historian who has his head in the clouds, a romantic biology teacher and a joyful physical education teacher. Each performance is a life sketch, good-natured and merry. The performances begin at 2 pm and 5 pm.
At 7 pm, a literary soiree dedicated to Alexander Pushkin will take place. Oleg Sokolov, a theatre and film actor, will open the evening. The programme features “Count Nulin” and love poems by the outstanding poet, followed by Alexander Pushkin’s “Blizzard,” a literary performance staged by young Moscow actors.
On 24 August at 5 pm, an open lesson by teachers of the Moscow Planetarium will be conducted at the Mysterious Astronomy lecture venue on Nikolskaya Street. Visitors will learn many unusual facts about the Universe. The huge world of space will open up to visitors in unexpected light – active volcanoes on Jupiter’s moon Io; myriads of snowflakes around Saturn; and methane rivers of Titan.
Starting at 3 pm, festival-goers will be able to master the basics of woodworking as taught by teachers involved in the Masterslavl project. The classes will take place at the Handicraft Lessons venue on Manezhnaya Square. At the open lesson “Household Service: Furniture Assembly,” visitors will learn to use carpenter tools and identify different types of wood used to make furniture. Theory will be put into practice by assembling a stool following diagram.
The City of Moscow excursion
At 4.30 pm and 6 pm, Alexander Garden will host the City of Moscow excursion, which will start at the festival venue in Manezhnaya Square. Professional guides will tell about the construction of the Kremlin, the special features of its fortifications, and Moscow’s defence during enemy invasions. Reproductions of Apollinary Vasnetsov’s paintings depicting the Kremlin at different times will be shown.
At 3 pm, a music studio will open its doors for children at the Art History venue. Children will feel like real rock stars as they learn the basics of playing percussion instruments and electric and bass guitars. Young guests will need to divide a popular song into simple parts and later piece them together to create a single composition. By the end of the class, a music group will be formed to entertain parents with a terrific final performance.
As in years past, Tverskoi Boulevard will become one of the main sports venues of the Back to School Festival. At midday, training sessions at the children’s skateboarding centre and open workouts will start opposite Timiryazev’s monument. The animation programme “Sportclass” will include group street classes in football freestyle (3 pm), hip-hop dancing (4 pm) and basketball freestyle (5 pm).
Festival venues on Novy Arbat Street will be dedicated to sports, dancing and other energetic activities. On 24 August from midday through 9 pm, a skate park and a surfing track will be open. Workshops will be held on parkour, fitness, tricking (a spectacular kind of sport combining elements of capoeira, gymnastics and breakdance), rope skipping (rope jumping plus different tricks) and street dancing.
Guests can watch exhibition performances and shows by masters of action sports:
-5 pm – a show by a skateboarding team;
-6 pm – cycling trial on BMX bikes exhibition performances;
-7 pm – kick scooter exhibition performances;
-6 pm and 7 pm – an acrobatic show by parkour stars and the Jump Evolution team. The programme has been prepared for the Back to School Festival;
-7.30 pm and 8.30 pm – a workout show;
-6 pm – 9 pm – dancing jams with the country’s most advanced street dancing teams.
The Back to School Festival will run in Moscow from 24 August to 4 September on 33 themed venues. Muscovites can attend various workshops and buy school items. Admission is free.