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National Arts Festival-ARTreach 2019 and inaugural Francis ‘Leebo’ De Lima Awards launched

By Cultural Development Foundation

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(PRESS RELEASE) — On Thursday, April 11, at a fitting and well organized ceremony in the exquisitely-decorated ambiance of the CDF conference room, the Cultural Development Foundation launched the National Arts Festival — ARTREACH programme for 2019.

Senior Officer of Events and Production, Tyrone Harris, in his salutation address, stressed that “Artreach endeavours to collect data, assess and instruct the CDF on the areas within the Arts where assistance, collaborative training and development programmes are needed”.

Harris noted: “The National Arts Festival continues to provide a national platform for St. Lucian artists to showcase their work and talents. In staging this Festival the CDF hopes to create the foundation for the revitalisation (where needed) and the continued sustenance and development of the arts…”

The National Arts Festival-Artreach 2019 will highlight, celebrate and honour the work and contributions of well-established artists in all genres of the arts.

Artreach 2019 kicks off with Poetry Night Live — Sounds of the Castries Underground — Cadet Street in Castries on April 26 from 7:30 p.m. The theme “The Sky Beneath Us” will see dynamic performances expressed through music, dramatization, and spoken word, featuring acclaimed poet Vladimir Lucien, with performances by Headphunk and the Saint Lucia Writers Forum.

On Saturday, April 27, a dance festival at the National Cultural Centre will feature top Saint Lucian dance groups of both youth and adults, and on April 28 from 7:30 p.m., the National Cultural Centre will be the home of some Lucian humor for theatre night — CDF and Youth SPAC collaborate on “The Big Job” — produced by Kiedel Sonny and Anthony Wilkie and directed by Kentillia Louis.

The Festival climaxes with Vieux Fort North hosting this year’s Community Festival, which is an eclectic mix of theatre, dance, music, visual and traditional arts, literature and spoken word, as well as family outdoor activities for all ages. All of this takes place at the Belle Vue Combined School from May 4-5 — 10 a.m. daily.

The CDF also lauded its partnership with members of the public and especially the private sector. These partnerships ensure that the NAF, the finest art and cultural celebration in Saint Lucia, will continue and improve and will guarantee that the Festival not only puts forward excellent showcases of talent, but that it will become a high quality festival in all its aspects.

The Festival’s collaboration and work in opening up arts and culture to young and old alike continues to expand with the inauguration of the CIBC FRANCIS “LEEBO” DE LIMA AWARD for aspiring artists.

This award is in recognition and a continuation of the work started by Francis “Leebo” De Lima with young aspiring artists in many areas of the arts. This auspicious award will carry on Leebo’s legacy and advocacy for aspiring artistes in Saint Lucia as it recognizes and celebrates worthy individuals creating new and innovative contributions to Saint Lucian arts and culture over a sustained period of time.

The CIBC FRANCIS “LEEBO” DE LIMA AWARD for aspiring artistes recognizes aspiring artists in the musical arts, the field of production, literary arts, modern media, visual and performing arts.

In attendance was Senator the Honourable Fortuna Belrose, minister in the Ministry of Tourism, Information and Broadcasting, Culture and Creative Industries with responsibility for Culture and Creative Industries; Mr. Daniel Belizair, chairman of the CDF Board of Directors; stakeholders representing various genres of the arts as well as corporate partners for the National Arts Festival-Artreach 2019.

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