From the neighbourhood to the big stage
Lucas is 8 years old, his big eyes expressing such sweetness. Shy at first, he lets go almost immediately when he is comfortable in a situation. Be it the football pitch or, better still, the dance hall. The son of a fishmonger and a housewife, Lucas was born in the ‘tondicello’ and lives in the Fortino area, a historic monument in Catania that stands in one of the city’s most fragile neighbourhoods. He has a 3-year-old brother, a 14-year-old sister and a slightly older sister who is expecting a baby. He will soon become a little uncle.
He doesn’t like to study – except for maths. Lucas, in fact, has the soul of an artist. At the Centro di Prossimità di San Cristoforo, run in symbiosis by Spazio 47 – the Hub di Prossimità of the Èbbene Foundation – and the Fondazione Stella Polare, he is there every afternoon. There, together with the operators, he does his homework. Duty before pleasure, you know. Like all children, he also plays football. But recently, thanks to the Sport for All programme introduced by the Fondazione Milan, Lucas has discovered new passions, such as art and dance.
“I like colouring and drawing because I can freely express what I feel inside,” he says after the lesson, when we stop to have a chat with him. He feels the same way when he dances. Today, for the first time, he shyly entered the lesson room. He watched for a while, then took off his shoes to conquer the large yellow carpet where the girls were being taught together with Silvia, the operator who runs the classes. “I had fun“, he says at the end, as if he didn’t really expect it either.
What does he want to be when he grows up? “A policeman or a fireman,” he answers straight away, “but also, why not, an artist”.
At his first lesson, his dance teacher gave him an A and a high-five to encourage him to continue on this path and perhaps even get to dance on stage in front of a real audience. “I would be so excited if I could perform in the spotlight. I imagine myself dressed up and dancing with everyone watching and with fans waiting for me like a real star.”
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