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Jun 4, 2014

Golden performances of the Festival of Arts take center stage at the Bliss

The 2014 National Festival of Arts officially opened on Tuesday and will conclude on Friday. Schools from throughout the country are participating in the cultural extravaganza. Today, at the Bliss Center for the Performing Arts, primary and high school students from Corozal, Cayo and Dangriga showcased the winning performances in dance, drama and song. Program Coordinator, Kim Vasquez says the high caliber presentations are the results of months of work.

 

Kim Vasquez, Program Coordinator, ICA

“We saw some outstanding items come to the stage this morning. We had Corozal and Cayo come for the first day and this afternoon we have all high schools that are showcasing; not competing, because the ones that are competing will be tomorrow evening. So these are the high school showcasing taking place today now and we also have some wonderful items on stage. Not only coming from high schools themselves, but for example we have youth hostel participating with two very nice items as well. So again the festival, especially at the youth level is opened to youth associations, youth groups, churches. Once you have something formal and it is well rehearsed and everything, you can enroll it into the Festival of Arts.”

 

Duane Moody

Kim Vasquez

“Kim, it says a lot to the work that you guys have been putting in over the years and this year alone. Tell us about that and the initiative that you guys have in place to ensure that these persons are practicing more the creative arts?”

 

Kim Vasquez

“Well what we are seeing here now is the culmination of work that begins at the district level and it starts with training for the workshops; I know some schools, they look for art teachers…what we call itinerant teachers, people that are skilled in dance or in music to come in and work with students. And so this has been starting for the last couple of months now. The items were adjudicated and the ones that won goal, you are now seeing coming to the national level. That will be taking place starting from today up until Friday. Every day we have a showcase at ten o’clock.”

 

Duane Moody

“What would you say are some of the setbacks with this initiative, with pushing creative arts in the schools?”

 

Kim Vasquez

“I think it has to be within the schools themselves. It has to be a commitment from the teachers and from the principals and management. It’s not a think that it should be optional. The expressive arts in the curriculum of the schools is something needed, it is important, and you can see the difference when schools have it; you can see the difference it makes in the students.”

 

On Thursday morning at ten a.m., high school students from Belmopan, Orange Walk and the Belize District will showcase their respective pieces. And in the night, a high school talent competition will take place at the Bliss Center for the Performing Arts where prizes are up for grabs. All districts will participate. The show starts at seven. Tickets are available at the Bliss for three dollars in advance and five dollars at the door.

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