April 16, 2010
Baptiste: Drama is culture’s ‘weakest link’

CULTURAL enthusiasts in St. Vincent and the Grenadines have benefited from two one-week workshops held in Drama and Dance held here recently.{{more}}

The workshops, which were held at the Peace Memorial Hall and the Kingstown Methodist Church, respectively, both began on Tuesday, April 6, 2010.

The workshop in Drama, which was sponsored by the Centre for Enterprise Development (CED), saw two Facilitators: Grace Peters Clarke and David Darkie Williams addressing Introduction to Theatre, Drama as an educational tool, Drama as an outreach mechanism for problem solving and Scripting.

Minister of Culture, René Baptiste, in her address said that it is noted that drama is the weakest point in culture and that persons did not recognize the different guilds for drama such as Screen actors, Broadway and Commercial. Baptiste said that while everyone is not an actor, they might be able to do make-up, wardrobe or even editing. She encouraged the participants to take a full hold of the workshop.

The dance workshop, which was held by the Ministry of Culture, saw a large number of participants from various schools in St Vincent. Grenadian Keith Najee Williams is the facilitator of the workshop. Williams, who has been trained in various dance forms, namely Horton, Graham, Limon, Dunham, Cuban Contemporary, and Modern Dance, Ballet Jazz, Afro Cuban folklore dances and Caribbean folk, mainly from Martinique, Jamaica, Cuba and Grenada, said that the response from the participants has been great and he was surprised at the number of young men who turned out because it was often said that dancing is for girls.

Williams said that dance should be a medium of education, not just mere enjoyment. He also noted that dancers must live the dance in order to touch their audience.

Chairperson of the National Cultural Foundation and the Dance Development Officer in the Ministry of Culture AnnMarie Venner said that she hopes both workshops would be beneficial to all of the participants as there was a great need for both forms of culture.