Poet, actor and playwright Vera Polozkova performed in London for the first time in eight years this September with a major charity concert in aid of Gift of Life, helping children beat cancer. Vera presented her new book and “The Work of Grief” programme created in collaboration with composer Alexander Manotskov. The charity event was organised in partnership with ZIMA Club.

Lyuba Galkina at Vera Polozkova concert. Photo by Julia Suhova. ©Gift of Life

The much-anticipated concert brought together over 250 connoisseurs of contemporary Russian poetry, becoming the first big community gathering of Russian-speaking Londoners since the beginning of the pandemic. Guests of the concert held at St George’s Hanover Square Church in Mayfair included: Princess Katya Galitzine; co-founder and Trustee of Gift of Life Lyuba Galkina; photographer Valery Katsuba; celebrity chef Alexei Zimin; investor and philanthropist Dmitry Falkovich; film director Ilya Khrzhanovsky, and many other compassionate supporters of the charity.

Vera Polozkova concert. Photo by Julia Suhova. ©Gift of Life

The sold-out concert included both new poems from the book “The Work of Grief” and perennial favourites by Vera performed in a new format. The beautiful programme stole the hearts of the audience who gave it a standing ovation.

“The Work of Grief” is a book that has been collected, accumulated, and been in gestation for seven years: wonderful years, during which my three children were born, my marriage was concluded and disintegrated, the familiar picture of the world rattled and burst at the seam, wars began between the countries dearest to me, my friends passed away, people around me showed miracles of spiritual generosity or chose to betray everything that they proclaimed and loved; when everything that I knew about myself, everything that I saw my future, time overturned and turned inside out several times – Vera Polozkova

Vera Polozkova concert. Photo by Julia Suhova. ©Gift of Life

This year Vera celebrates her 35th birthday, and Gift of Life celebrates a decade of work to save children’s lives, and this anniversary concert was filled with exciting and special moments. After a two-hour performance, close friends and supporters of the charity’s mission gathered for an intimate reception with Vera and Alexander at ZIMA Russian Restaurant.

Gift of Life is every grateful to Vera Polozkova and Alexander Manotskov for an unforgettable evening of poetry and music and thanks all guests and friends of the charity for their continued support. The evening raised over £13,000 which will enable Gift of Life to pay for a course of treatment of Erwinase for four-year-old Katya from Chita, Russia. The medication is not available in Russia but is absolutely vital to save the child’s life whilst she’s being treated from acute lymphoblastic leukaemia.

To support more children under Gift of Life care please donate now at www.giftoflife.eu/donate