Cayman ‘on world stage’ in Trinidad

| 20/08/2019
CNS Local Life
Cayman delegation at CARIFESTA opening parade

(CNS Local Life): Over the first four days of 14th annual Caribbean Festival of the Arts (CARIFESTA) in Trinidad and Tobago, Cayman’s cultural representatives have joined thousands of delegates from around the region sharing their heritage and experiencing the displays and performances of artists from more than 20 countries.

On Tuesday, 20 August, Cayman showed off its theatrical and culinary chops. Chefs Brittani Seymour, Timisha Edwards and Jessica Moore first offered their presentation, “He Hath Founded it Upon the Sea”, a tribute to Cayman’s seamen, among them Seymour’s and Edwards’ grandfathers, said Marcia Muttoo, managing director of the Cayman National Cultural Foundation (CNCF).

In the evening, Frank McField’s drama Downside Up, directed by Henry Muttoo, CNCF artistic director, was performed at the Little Carib Theatre and will be put on again Saturday at the Queen’s Hall Theatre.

CNS Local Life
Culture Minister Dwayne Seymour with heritage crafter Jeralow Rankine and storyteller Virginia “Auntie V” Foster at Cayman’s booth

Morgan DaCosta, CNCF deputy chairman, who has accompanied Cayman’s delegation to CARIFESTA, noted that the representatives have been well received. “The energy, quality and the talent that exist within our performers has put Cayman on the world stage. Our dancers have wowed their audiences, even making the front page of the (Trinidad and Tobago) Guardian newspaper,” he told CNS.

During performances Monday night, DaCosta praised Cayman’s artists. “Our local band Local Motion and our reigning soca monarch, Vashti Bodden, proved that Cayman can hold its own among its contemporaries,” he said. DaCosta also noted that McField’s play was being staged “with a talented group of local actors”, and pointed to Wednesday’s screening of filmmaker Badir Awe’s Luna’s Ring, both of which “(expose) the Cayman Islands to a greater audience”.

Calling Carifesta “a celebration of the member countries’ arts and culture”, DaCosta said the festival “in its purest form is a showcase where only the best work from a country is expected” to be shown.

He noted that Minister of Culture Dwayne Seymour “did an incredible job to get the funding necessary” to send a 50-person contingent to CARIFESTA, adding, “The festival allows every member of our delegation an opportunity to interact with their counterparts in their respective disciplines to attend workshops, techniques and just overall see the work being produced in other islands and to take with them best skills and practices.”

At Monday’s country night where Cayman performed, Seymour, who has joined the delegation for part of their stay, said, “It is my view that experiences such as CARIFESTA continue to prove that culture is vital to our wellbeing as individuals, to the health of our communities, and to the strengthening of our respective countries.

“Being here among regional cultural leaders, and icons such as the (Barbadian calypsonian) Mighty Gabby, who I met earlier, I consider this a once-in-a-lifetime experience. And what I’ve seen thus far has reinforced my belief in the need for continued investment in cultural arts, especially for the youth of the Cayman Islands.”

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Category: Arts, Culture, Local News

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  1. Anonymous says:

    glad i’m only a paper caymanian