Charity Ball

On the 9th of November the annual Charity Ball of Maria’s Children Art Center and Charitable Fund “Pelican” took place in gorgeous interiors of the Smirnov’s Mansion on Tverskoy boulevard. The evening’s programme included gourmet dinner, dance performances by children from the Filimonki children’s home, live music, loud and silent charity auctions of Maria’s Children and Pelican students works, lottery, gift fair and dances.

This time our dear guests donated 7 millions rubles! We cordially thank all those who helped us and are now supporting children and orphanage graduates, young residents of psychoneurological institutions and special needs children.

Stately old halls of the mansion became bright with children’s paintings, a row of ceramic clowns, made by children from the Beslan school №1, appeared on the mantelpiece.

This time the theme of the ball was a fairy tale “The Wizard of OZ” and our decorators managed to do a real miracle!

The interiors were decorated with natural ivy that “grew into” balloons; in the middle of each table stood a glass shade with ceramic emerald houses and plants inside, in which little lights sparkled like glowworms.

Lorie Hamel, the body-artist from Canada turned clown Guillaume into a fantastic green creature (that’s probably how the Goowin, Great and Awful, looked like for the inhabitants of the Emerald City).

Our Goodwin appeared to be extremely charismatic and the guests were very pleased to chat and take memorable photos with him.

Children from the Filimonki children’s home gladdened the guests with a fascinating dance performance based on different fragments of the fairy tale.

These children attend art classes at Maria’s cottage studio, regularly come to our summer camp, participate in the rehabilitation programme in Italy and we were happy to present them to the guests of the ball.

The largest amount of funds was contributed by the guests in the course of an altruistic competition at the charity auction of the children’s works.

The auction was held, as usual, by the famous doctor-clown Patch Adams, Maria’s Children’s old friend, founder of laughter therapy and hospital clowning.

At the photo-atelier the guests could make a memorable photo and get their portraits in a vintage style.

The musical accompaniment of the evening was provided by Cover Band Music Time with the technical support of DTsound.

The guests took active part not only in the loud auction

but also in the internet (silent) auction, charitable all-prize lottery,

admired children’s art at the fair and made donations.

It’s for the second year that the following contemporary artists and photographers have been offering their works to the charitable auction: Art-group ZIP, Alexey Buldakov, Evgenia Buravleva, Lika Gomiashvili, Andrey Kuzkin, Yulia Malinina, Valeria Nibiru, Oliel_M, Egor Plotnikov, Matvey Segal, Oksana Yushko. Alongside with the children’s works these works also participated in the internet auction (website

We express our huge gratitude for the sponsorship of the ball to Sberbank Russia, Sberbank Private banking, Baring Vostok and DLA Piper.

Thank you to the Smirnov’s Mansion for the warm hospitality and to Corso Catering – for the high standard of service!

Thank you to the Russian wine house “Abrau Durso” and Beluga Company for drinks,

Rosinter Corporation for providing our staff-members and volunteers with delicious lunches and for lottery prizes.

Thank you, dear Natasha and Hannes Chopra for the inestimable organizational and financial help,

Thank you to Omelchenko Gallery for organization of the Second Charitable Exhibition of Contemporary Art in support of our organizations.

Patch Adams for holding the Loud charitable auction,

Peter Yanovich for organization of the Silent charitable auction,

Anastasia Frieva for design of the event’s printed materials,

Dmitry Sinitsyn for translation,

Scientist Ilya Kolmanovskiy for the lot of the silent auction,

Alexander Shishov for being the host of the evening,

We are grateful to Design-studio Pagedown, Yandex company, hotel chain “Katerina”, EKObazar, AST, Institute of glass, Vine house “Kaudal”, Stage Entertainment, “Vostryakovo”, “Maguro” for the lottery prizes. Thank you to Anna Kulyagina for searching the prizes and help with the lottery.

We thank Vera Aksyonova and her wonderful balloon dressers team and Alina Eliseeva for the design of the ball and magic atmosphere.

Photo-atelier “Shipr” for discounts and brilliant work,

Mobile Standscompany for the press-wall rent discounts.

Diana Devitskaya, Vyacheslav Zamyslov, Evgeny Ivanov, Natalia Maslennikova for photographying the event.

Please find more photos of the event here.

Thank you to all our volunteers who helped at the ball!