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NIFCA closes with cultural treat

BEA DOTTIN, [email protected]

NIFCA closes with cultural treat

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Minister of Culture Stephen Lashley described it as “a veritable melting pot of multiple artistic skills” and the finale of the National Independence Festival Of Creative Arts (NIFCA) 2012 did not disappoint.
The people who gathered to see and hear of the awards and other recognition given to Barbadian artistes – young and old – were treated to a variety of cultural performances reaching across speech presentations, dances with intriguing moves and musical renditions.
As master of ceremonies Margaret Allman-Goddard often intoned through the night, the on-stage performances gave the audience a taste of the cultural treats they might have missed during the month-long festival, now in its 39th year.
Asserting that the National Independence Festival Of Creative Arts features “an immeasurable wealth of home-grown talent”, Lashley said: “Since its origins in November 1973, NIFCA has been the proverbial canvas on which artistes have created their own various masterpieces in multiple genres and disciplines.”
Sprinkled between announcements of awardees’ names, the evening’s activities featured a combination of stage artistry and prior performances consigned to on-screen presentations.
Aprille Thomas delivered her Gold Award-winning piece of poetry. In a Tribute To My Grandparents, she conjured up images of past Barbadian village life, reciting episodes of the grandfather’s drunkenness in the local bar.
She detailed grandma’s housekeeping that appeared centred on the kitchen and a special pot that not only produced food, but also became a projectile hurled at the few who crossed her path.
The more than 1 000 people in attendance got a lesson in ways to push and reasons for Barbados’ integration into the Caribbean Community from Curtis Critchlow, who in a humorous essay declared that a change in diet was calling into question the readiness of Bajan men to do their duty when called upon.
“This present generation of Barbadian men are unable to stand up and perform as a consequence of what they are being fed,” he said. “The softness that we are seeing in our men today is a recent phenomenon. Barbadian men were once the most potent force in the world.”
Arguing that desertion of traditional Barbadian foods was the cause, he saw a solution to this Bajan tragedy in the immigration authorities granting unhindered access to the island by Caribbean women versed in the culinary art of preparing ground provision meals.
The trio Ellerslie Rising Stars sang their Bronze Award piece I Smile, performing in unison and at times breaking into solo pieces that put on show their individual vocal prowess.
There were two Silver Award-winning dance acts by the group New Creations Ministries, performing a piece on the Resurrection called They Didn’t Know and Jai Clarke did a solo entitled The Journey.
The Ellerslie School Choir brought the evening to a close with their rendition of My Life, My Love, My All. (GA)