Hi! I’m Robin Smirnov and I am delighted to be the co-Bazaar Chair for CAWC International’s 35th Charity Christmas Bazaar.
For me the Bazaar encapsulates what our Club is all about. I love the way all our incredible members come together and contribute in so many different ways to deliver this amazing experience for customers and vendors. It is a lot of hard work but it is also a lot of fun and we raise a huge amount of money for our chosen cause.
This year we are raising money for the Motor Neurone Disease Breathing Support Project which is being delivered by members of the Palliative Care Service based at Florence Nightingale Hospice, which is part of Buckinghamshire NHS Trust. The project has the full backing of the Chiltern Branch of the Motor Neurone Disease Association. This project provides essential end of life care to MND sufferers. To date we have raised over £38,000.
I am originally from a tiny town in Pennsylvania called Little Meadows! I was born singing and my parents didn’t quite know what to do with all of the operatic sounds coming out of my little self! Luckily, they soon found an outlet for my love of singing and I sang in my first opera chorus at age 4! I was part of the gingerbread cookie chorus in the opera Hansel and Gretel. I can still remember every detail from the smell of the makeup, the costumes, the bright lights and, of course, the singing!
I moved to London 21 years ago to attend the Royal Academy of Music for my postgraduate studies and I’ve been here ever since! I’ve performed in professional choirs, in opera, oratorio and as a recitalist all over the USA, UK and Italy. Now, I keep very busy teaching singing lessons to children and adults. My children Violetta ( yes, she IS named after Verdi’s most famous operatic heroine!) and Viktor are also great singers and our home is constantly filled with music!
When I first joined CAWC 15 years ago I was a member of the Moms and Tots group where I made many wonderful friends. Soon after, I joined the board of CAWC as 2nd VP of activities and went on to serve as President of the club for two different terms.
I’m very grateful to CAWC for giving me the opportunity to learn so many new skills and I’m very proud of all of the money that we have raised for local charities. It is incredibly important that we give back to our community and that we teach our children the importance of kindness and helping others.
My #1 reason for loving CAWC is all of the amazing friends for a lifetime I have made! Our club is made up of the most wonderful women who come together to make great things happen!’