The activities span all quadrants of the island and encompasses various aspects of the arts including music, dance, poetry and drama.
Executive Director of the Cultural Development Foundation Kennedy “Boots” Samuel says a major highlight of the calendar of events is the staging of arts festivals in seven communities namely Dennery, Vieux Fort, Laborie, Chosieul, Soufriere, Anse La Raye and Gros Islet.
“We have reviewed and looked at the National Arts Festival and one of the major criticism not only of the festival but a number of activities that we call national are truly really events held in the capital city Castries and the large majority of the citizenry do not participate and so we have had a dramatic review of the festival and even of the operations of the CDF to ensure that what we call national truly reflects that sentiment. So this year will be the beginning of the evolution of the National Arts Festival”.
According to the Standing National Independence Committee the aim this year is to create more opportunities to showcase the talents of Saint Lucian artistes.
Samuel says a special training programme will also take place in an effort to help develop both established and upcoming artistes.
“We have identified selected genres that we are catering for this year and we will do master training sessions both to enhance the skills of practitioners in the various genres and to also identify leaders who will further the building of the arts throughout the island. We will have master training workshops in dance choreography, acting, theatre directing, coral singing, poetry and pros writing and hopefully in the coming years the event can evolve to cater for the other strategic areas like film and so on”.
The Executive Director says the Cultural Development Foundation will continue to work with support groups throughout all communities island wide to ensure the success of independence events.