As the Jamaica Cultural Development Commission (JCDC) approaches the opening of entries for its 2023 competitions, Honourable Fayval Williams, M.P., Minister of Education and Youth, is encouraging school administrators to integrate the Performing Arts as part of their teaching strategy.
Ms. Loretta Rickets (right), Acting Principal of Merl Grove High School and Master of Ceremonies for the night, is all smiles as Acting Chief Education Officer in the Ministry of Education and Youth, Dr Kasan Troupe (left), invites her to show off her colourful costume to the audience at the National Youth Month 2022 Global Night Celebrations that was held on Sunday, November 20, 2022 at the Hope Botanical Gardens.Over fifteen Jamaican school ties are stitched onto Rickets’ costume.
“School is not just about academics… It is about the Arts as well, it’s about our culture, knowing who we are, knowing from where we came, where we are going [and] knowing that we can influence the direction of our society.” Williams emphasized.
Honourable Fayval Williams, Minister of Education and Youth (left) shares a light moment with Senator the Honourable Senator Kamina Johnson-Smith, Minister of Foreign Affairs and Foreign Trade (right), and Acting Chief Education Officer Dr Kasan Troupe at the National Youth Month 2022 Global Night Celebrations that was held on Sunday, November 20, 2022 at the Hope Botanical Gardens.
Citing the ‘Just Medz It Jingle Competition’ that was launched as part of the yearlong, ‘End Violence in Schools‘ Campaign, Minister Williams said her team chose a jingle competition because music is a powerful medium to carry the message to youth that they can walk away from violent behavior. She made the comment at the National Youth Month 2022 Global Night Celebrations, that was held on Sunday, November 20, 2022 at the Pavilion, Hope Gardens Botanical Gardens.
State Minister in the Ministry of Culture, Gender, Entertainment and Sport, The Honourable Alando Terrelonge, brings greetings at the National Youth Month 2022 Global Night Celebrations, that was held on Sunday, November 20, 2022 at the Hope Botanical Gardens.
The Honourable Alando Terrelonge MP, State Minister in the Ministry of Culture, Gender, Entertainment and Sport, who also attended the event, further underscored the importance of youth involvement in areas of the performing arts. He said, “When I attended Half Way Tree Primary School we used to enter [JCDC] Speech and Drama Festival…the performing arts helps you to hone your skills, it helps you to believe in yourself and to find your voice, it helps you to understand the importance of believing in yourself.”
Simone Campbell, Programmes Development Specialist in the Ministry of Education and Youth, strikes a pose while Mr. Joel Nomdarkham, Marketer, Social Impact Creator and one of the Emcees for the night, dances playfully to the vibrant music at the National Youth Month 2022 Global Night Celebrations, that was held on Sunday, November 20, 2022 at the Hope Botanical Gardens.
Emcees for the event, Ms. Loretta Rickets, Acting Principal of Merl Grove High School and Mr. Joel Nomdarkham, Journalist, Marketer and Social Impact Creator, further encouraged participation in the Arts. Ms. Rickets said she encourages teachers to use the Arts in education because it helps to get students’ attention and through it, teachers are able to deliver lessons in a fun way.
Mr. Nomdarkham credited the JCDC’s Festival of the Performing Arts for his personal and professional growth. He said. “JCDC was very critical and integral for my development because I remember at the Grade three level I entered my first speech competition and being pushed in front of hundreds of people for the first time… I think it was really the vehicle through which I became a public speaker… a debater… going into leadership positions and now where I am, head of Marketing at a leading Caribbean Company, that is really where the foundation started.”
About the Jamaica Festival of the Performing Arts Programme
For over 50 years, the JCDC’s National Festival of the Performing Arts has aided Jamaicans with finding a platform for expressing themselves in ways that are both creative and progressive. The 2023 competitions promise to continue this positive nation building tradition. The areas covered in the Jamaica Festival of the Performing Arts programme include : Music, Dance, Drama, Speech, and Traditional Folk Forms.
Persons interested in entering the upcoming Festival of the Performing Arts Competitions are encouraged to visit www.jcdc.gov.jm, JCDC’s social media pages or call any of the 13 JCDC parish offices for more details.