Press Release:- The annual National Arts Festival (NAF) is a major activity on the national cultural calendar in Saint Lucia. The aim of the festival is to sustain the invaluable and systematic developmental work in the arts that was achieved during the years of the M&C Fine Arts Awards Scheme initiated in 1979 by Minvielle & Chastanet Ltd. Since 2013 in response to the call from the arts community, NAF has become a truly national event, taking the arts into the communities around the island. On the heels of the successful hosting of NAF 2018, the Cultural Development Foundation (CDF) thanks the many partners who continue to support the organization in developing meaningful partnerships – private sector, governmental and NGOs as it works towards building a lasting legacy for the people of Saint Lucia.
The fishing village of Canaries was the proud host of this year’s Community Festival. The two-day affair (April 14th & 15th) showcased visual and performing artists from the community who illustrated through a variety of creative means, their unique talents and abilities. At the official launch of NAF on March 15th 2018, Andre Lansiquot, a representative from the Canaries Planning Committee shared his enthusiasm at the prospect of the activity when he remarked, “In Canaries, we don’t get the opportunity very often to showcase the talent that lies within the village…but it is our intention to ensure that this activity becomes one of the most memorable years of this activity… being held around the island.” The hosts did not disappoint as their creatives came out with an array of visual art from recycled newspaper bowls and functional calabash craft to locally produced chocolate and soap to wood sculptures and graphic animation. The event was attended by Minister for the Creative Industries, Senator the Honourable Fortuna Belrose as well as Parliamentary Representative for Canaries, Honourable Dominic Fedee.
In a brilliant display of thought-provoking and insightful theatrical performances, students of the Sir Arthur Lewis Community College (SALCC) Drama Club put on two nights (April 21st & 22nd) of the production, ‘A Little Folktale’. The production, written, directed and performed by the students was well received on both evenings by a warm and welcoming audience. The play tells the story of the Caribbean folklore characters ladjablès, ti bolonm and kòkma weaved into an exquisite modern day setting. Commendations from the performances were glowing, complimentary and heartfelt, including the following from CDF’s FaceBook page:
A wonderful show! Full of energy and with brilliant young artists! A new arts company is born!! ~ Alliance Française de Sainte Lucie
It was FANTASTIC!!!!!!! ~ Colin Weekes
It was well put together and well executed. Considering it was written and directed by the SALCC students, it gives me great hope for the continued development of theatre Arts here. I am proud of them and proud of the parents who continue to support them. My wish is for more adult support of these activities. Best wishes and sincere thanks CDF… ~ June Frederick
On Friday 27th April, Cadet Street was transformed into an outdoor downtown café. Interpretations of an extensive body of work by Adrian Augier, the featured poet as well as original pieces were presented by Tori Leonce, Garner Raymond, Swithin Cornelle, Fayola Lubin, Runley Gordon, Ethan Fletcher, Perlina Murray, Jean Mederick, Sadia Chandler, Kerr Glasgow, Felicia Montoute and Krystal Nestor. In a forty-five (45) minute set, Adrian Augier along with Dianna Philip (vocalist) and Kenson Hippolyte (keyboardist) amplified the sounds of the Castries Underground in a dramatic display of literary prowess and without doubt left the audience in a state of reflection and inspired to explore ones culture, identity, and the inequalities existing in his society.
The CDF looks forward to next year’s celebration and once again thanks all the partners who continue to support our efforts in the development of arts and culture in Saint Lucia.