For small people and their big people – a Christmas experience like no other, this Sunday!

Are you a little per­son?  Do you know a little per­son?  Well, grab that little per­son and bring him / her down to the Christ­mas Feast this Sunday, because we have some very excit­ing things hap­pen­ing for big people and little people alike.

Let me intro­duce you to Sally Don­ald­son.  She is the Founder of the magic­al, won­der­ful social enter­prise, Tea Dance for Little People.  Sally has been busy work­ing with us at Feast to bring you a magic­al and totally unique Christ­mas exper­i­ence.  The full low-down on what you’ll find this Sunday at Feast is over here, but to give you a taste — roam­ing the streets of West Nor­wood you might find an unusu­ally nimble, body-pop­ping Santa, the Fairy-who-fell-off-the-Christ­mas-tree, pop-up craft activ­it­ies and more.

Sally has answered a few of our ques­tions to give you an idea of what Tea Dance for Little People is all about and why Feast is the only place to be this Sunday.

Q. Tell us about Tea Dance for Little People

Ori­gin­ally TDLP was set up as an altern­at­ive fam­ily arts cafe.  Hav­ing com­pleted a series of field­work assign­ments for my MA in dance anthro­po­logy as well as hav­ing two little ones myself, I noticed a gap in the mar­ket for a fam­ily com­munity space for where they could access qual­ity arts at their own pace.  It was a space fam­il­ies could come to for half an hour or a whole day, whatever worked for them.  There was always an artist there, wheth­er a storyteller, dan­cer, musi­cian or visu­al artist, and they respon­ded to the chil­dren and their response to the design of the space.  In one year we went from a tea party to pyjama party, from outer space to card­board cit­ies, from Hal­loween to Christ­mas to Valentines.  It was a child-centred space, and the artists were trained in a very spe­cif­ic way to encour­age phys­ic­al and cre­at­ive devel­op­ment, look at the indi­vidu­al child as well as the whole group and inspire start­ing points for fam­il­ies to cre­ate their own jour­neys in the space.

In April we faced a 200% rent­al increase and couldn’t sus­tain the space so we decided to close.  I did it with a heavy heart, wor­ried I would loose all my artists and fam­il­ies that had con­nec­ted with us over the last year, but instead we just got stronger and stronger.  Yes we had to rebuild a little and some­times I miss not hav­ing our own venue but now the world is now open for TDLP.  We are build­ing stronger rela­tion­ships with part­ner ven­ues and com­munity organ­isa­tions and are even mov­ing into middle scale theatre with our Christ­mas sea­son at Strat­ford Cir­cus.

Aside from this our pas­sion is our out­reach work.  Our mis­sion as a social enter­prise is to impact on the health and well-being of fam­il­ies with young chil­dren through cre­at­ive arts and this year we wel­come our first grant for our new scheme for health centre wait­ing rooms called “Play while you Wait”.  This is some­thing we want to grow to help par­ents engage with their kids cre­at­ively in places and space where they have to wait — what could you be doing with your kids in traffic jams, shop­ping queues, hos­pit­als etc

Q. Where can people find you?

Our website has the most up-to-date info.  Now that our spe­cial events sell out fast, it’s through our reg­u­lar e-news­let­ters that people get to hear of events, so best to join through the web­site.  We also tweet at td4lp and have a very act­ive facebook page.

Q.  What do you have planned for the Christ­mas West Nor­wood Feast?

Ho ho ho! that would be telling.  A rap­ping Santa, an elf barn dance, a Christ­mas fairy wish and the chance to ask Santa that one ques­tion that you could never quite fig­ure out — how does he get down that chim­ney!?

Don’t miss Tea Dance for Little People’s ima­gin­at­ive exper­i­ences, this Sunday at Feast:

11–11.45am @ Garden­ing: Christ­mas Walk­about + Elf Fact­ory
12–12.45pm @ Retro: Prom­en­ade per­form­ance with Santa + his Head Elf
1–1.45pm @ Food: Christ­mas Walk­about + Elf Fact­ory
3–3.45pm @ Artis­ans: Prom­en­ade per­form­ance with Santa + his Head Elf

For full details of all Feast enter­tain­ment and activ­it­ies, head over here 

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