Young At Arts performers ready to take the stage

| 28/07/2016 | 0 Comments
CNS Local Life

(L-R) Young At Arts participants Jaedyn Hanna, Layah Ebanks, Lebron McLean, Aleah Copeland, Ericka Rockett-McBean, Katherine Erskine and Jada Bodden dressed in character for their upcoming production

(CNS): Seven aspiring actors, dancers and musicians, who have participated this summer in the Young At Arts programme hosted by the Cayman National Cultural Foundation (CNCF), will be taking the stage 5-7 August in the production of Isabel. The eight-week programme, for participants aged 12-19, trains young people in the practical disciplines of performing arts.

Instructors and practitioners in drama, music/voice, dance and technical theatre taught in the programme.

Participants this year are Lebron McLean, Ericka Rockett-McBean, Jada Bodden, Aleah Copeland, Layah Ebanks, Katherine Erskine and Jaedyn Hanna.

Speaking about the experience, Rockett-McBean, 19, said, “This summer has been quite the journey thus far. My tutors have left me with lifelong lessons that I will hold dear forever, mainly to ‘always bare my soul’ when performing, to ‘trust the captain’ when preparing and ‘rehearse at 100%’. When I arrived, I knew no one but now we are like a little family.”

The young people will put the lessons they have learned to practical use as they stage the production of Isabel, a musical written by local playwright Patricia Bent. It tells the story of a boy and a girl who fall in love under the most unusual circumstances; it’s a Caymanian love story.

Taking the reins of the production is the regionally acclaimed director Eugene Williams, who has more than 30 years of experience in theatre, starting in his native Guyana, where he was a leading actor at the Theatre Guild. Most recently he was the director of Jamaica’s School of Drama.

Reflecting on the talent and growth of the students, Williams said, “It has been a pleasure working with this talented and very intelligent bunch of participants. The process has been about providing stimulation for their own creativity towards an interpretation of their various roles. But it has also been about their personal development as they engage with the literature and expressive demands of the art of the theatre. We look forward to sharing what we expect will be an entertaining outcome.”

The production, which includes music, song and dance, opens Friday, 5 August at 8pm at the Harquail Theatre. The following day there will be two performances, at 6pm and 8pm. The final production will take place on Sunday, 7 August at 6pm. Tickets cost $5.

CNCF programmes manager Patrice Beersingh said, “It amazing to see the talent of each student evolve from the audition process for the Young At Arts Programme held a few weeks ago, to now having worked with a world-class director and dramaturge such as Mr Williams; the successful development is a direct reflection of the work of CNCF and its programmes.

“The public should not miss this production, as they will have missed the opportunity to see and support the true potential of some of our brightest young stars in the performing arts.”

The Young At Arts programme is supported by Butterfield.

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Category: Performing Arts

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