Minister for Culture Lauds Okolo Tegremantine Arts Theatre at 40th Anniversary Banquet
BASSETERRE, ST. KITTS, MAY 30TH 2013 — Hon. Marcella Liburd, Minister for Culture, is full of praise for the Okolo Tegremantine Arts Theatre, as it celebrates its 40th Anniversary.
At the Awards Banquet on Saturday 25 May, Minister Liburd told the 130 guests that “the Group that we honour and celebrate tonight has, for forty years, faithfully presented our art and our culture in a way that is meaningful, constructive, joyful and wise. If the ideals and values expressed by the Group – discipline, focus, responsibility, gratitude, teamwork, respect, compassion, family, beauty – were to be replicated, our country and the world would be a more positive place.”
“Knowing that the mirror that had been given to us by others was reflecting distorted images, Okolo made certain that the mirror they held up reflected our dignity and our worth. And for that, and to them, we will always be indebted” the Minister declared. Further, “the Okolo Tegremantine Arts Theatre has warmly and joyously celebrated the folklore and traditions of our islands and our people and made it possible for so many in our society to express their inner creativity in a manner that is positive, constructive and liberating.”
Melvin Edwards, a founding member, had earlier presented an enlivening and enlightening feature address which outlined the beginnings, early history, vision and achievements of a Company which “touched the imaginations and lives of thousands who have come within earshot of its potent rhythms, within sight of its vivid expressions in dance and within grasp of its distinctive messages in poetry, song and the unique fusions thereof.”
Awards were presented to founding members, and those who had made exceptional contributions, in particular to Lorna Ava Henry, Artistic Director and Principal Choreographer, as “Keeper of the Flame”.
The Banquet was a truly wonderful experience, fortified by a varied and delectable menu and enhanced by the beautiful ambience of the Ocean Terrace Inn. A pre-Dinner cultural presentation by the Company entranced the appreciative guests, many of whom wanted more.
The 40th Anniversary celebrations continue on Friday 31 May with a Free Concert at Independence Square (postponed from the previous week because of rain). All are invited to a grand exposition of drums, horns, poetry, dance and song, with guest artistes and including the Legends band.