Showing posts from January, 2012

Welcome to Jamrock! Junior Gong and Celine Dion Rock Jamaican Jazz and Blues Festival!

Celine Dion certainly received a fantastic welcome to Jamrock on Friday evening. Over 30,000 patrons swelled the Multi Purpose Stadium, Jamaica on Friday night, travelling from Negril Point to Portland and beyond to have a chance to experience Celine Dion perform live.

Celine Dion lived up to expectations! She left her heart onstage and performed as if she was building a career. Onstage and off, Celine was professional, down to earth, appreciative of her fans and an excellent example for all Artists. On meeting Celine, it was evident that she cared deeply for others, and took time to talk to the Jamaican staff and crew attending to her needs, even wishing the AE Team safe travels as we tackled the post show traffic. We were impressed!

"Out in the streets, they call it MUUUURRRDER!" - Jr. Gong Marley Damian Jr. Gong Marley murdered the show with love, livity and strong messages on saturday night, delivering an inspiring, thought provoking, energetic performance. Jr. Gong in…

Highlighting Wars to Promote Peace: Forgotten Diaries Explores

"War in the east, war in the west
War up north, war down south
War, war, rumours of war"

It is a little known fact that dozens of wars are currently being waged around the world. Outside of the Middle East, most of these conflicts are shunned by, and receive almost no attention from the media. An even less known fact is that of the vastly untapped potential of young people in these zones and the significant role they can play in peace building.
"That until there are no longer first class
And second class citizens of any nation
Until the colour of a man's skin
Is of no more significance than the colour of his eyes
Me say war"

These two little known facts form the heart of the motivation driving the team of seven hard working young people behind ‘Forgotten Diaries’. Forgotten Diaries (FD) is a project which aims to raise awareness of the dire situation facing over 100 million children and youth living in conflict ridden environments. Their unique and innovative appro…

Bahamas, the perfect wedding destination or just a brand?

In the Caribbean, we pride ourselves for our beautiful beaches and breathtaking attractions. Tourism is one industry where we have a competitive advantage and, one of the primary sources of income for our developing nations. As such we develop brands, such as "reggae capital", "Dream Destination", among others to distinguish one destination from another.

In an effort to reinforce the image of The Bahamas as the most desirable location for dream weddings (an initiative which I think should be congratulated), a competition which serves to raise awareness about the islands of the Bahamas, and to engage the interest of a primary marketplace was launched in 2011. This competition was open to couples throughout the United Kingdom, a huge source of foreign tourists for the island. Brides-and-grooms-to-be uploaded their snapshots and videos to tell why they wished to win a free island wedding in The Bahamas. The Winners were recently announced.

Each couple has won their own…

Olive Senior: Jamaican Gem "Creating Memorable Characters in Prose or Poetry"

"We all play roles in life."
- Olive Senior

A Cultural Voice representative was present at the UWI writing workshop hosted by Olive Senior on Saturday January 21, at the University of the West Indies, titled "Creating Memorable Characters in Prose or Poetry." Participants were warned to come prepared to write and participate.

As an opening exercise each participant chose a random photograph from a stack provided.  The challenge was to  manipulate perspectives with respect to: voice, tone, viewpoint and time while maintaining the same focus of attention by answering  a series of questions relating to the photograph.

Rasheen, one of the participants, spoke to Cultural Voice after the event.  She noted that she felt that this particular exercise really made a difference in understanding different perspectives. I found some of the descriptions and characterizations that came out of th…

Etta James: In Memory

Etta James, winner of 6 Grammy Awards and 17 Blues Music Awards came from humble beginings. Raised mainly by "Sarge", "Mama Lu" and her mom "the Mystery Lady" she had her first exposure to music in the Church.

We remember Etta James' beautiful voice singing the lyrics:
At last, my love has come around My lonely days have ended And Life is like a song....

Born To Dance! Georgey Souchette - A French/Caribbean Gem!


In 2010, Cultural Fusion featured a French Dance Company under the Artistic Direction of Rick ODUMS, originally American who found a home in France. Undoubtably, one the stars of that show was Georgey Souchette, who I had the pleasure of interviewing for Cultural Voice via skype.

"You always struggle in art"

If you don't believe that intercultural exchange breaks down borders, listen to how I met Georgey! On a cold day in November, 2009, I was making my way home from a day teaching english to high school students in Nanterre, a suburb just outside the Paris, France when my cell phone rang. A heavy creolised french accent said 'hello' on the other end. He introduced himself explaining that he was recruiting dancers for a project in Tolouse, near to the South of France. I thought how odd, and random,  and for a moment considered that it  must  have been a divine conspiracy to get me back in the dance studio and on a stage! How did anyone in Paris know that I …