More financial investment needed in arts and culture – Chief Cultural Officer

Chief Cultural Officer, Raymond Lawrence

Chief Cultural  Officer, Raymond Lawrence, says that to further develop the country, more financial investment needs to be made in the arts and culture sector.

His comment came at the 2020 Golden Drum Awards, held over the weekend where 13 individuals were recognized for their contributions to the arts and culture in Dominica.

“In the overall plans for Dominica’s development, we are going to need to invest more in the arts and culture, including our performance spaces like the Arawak House of Culture and the Old Mill because our arts and culture do play a vital role in the upliftment, advancement and promotion of our country,” Lawrence stated.

The Chief Cultural officer challenged awardees to create opportunities for culture to thrive in Dominica and further noted that the wider Dominican public must play its part in ensuring that the population is involved in some level of cultural growth.

“We want to encourage all those involved in promoting arts and culture in Dominica to continue to provide opportunities for our population to be engaged in the creative and positive pursuit and for the population to be involved in some form of cultural development,” he stated. “Let’s all help to make Dominica a  better place by making positive contributions to Dominica’s development  through the promotion of music, dance,  creole language, creole education, culture tourism, culture industry, and the list goes on.”

Meantime, Parliamentary Secretary in the Ministry of Tourism, International Transport, and Maritime Initiatives, with special responsibility for Air and Sea Port Operations, Chekira Lockhart-Hypolite, who represented the Minister of Culture Roslyn Paul says COVID-19 has presented new opportunities for artists and culture.

According to Lockhart-Hypolite, “our performers and our musical bands have a great opportunity now to help to inspire and motivate and help to promote our country. Our artists can help to encourage our population to bring out the best in ourselves and bring out the true richness of our people and our landscape.”

The Parliamentary Secretary commended the artists for raising Dominica’s recognition in the international community.

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4 Comments

  1. Bob D
    November 19, 2020

    What is Dominica’ culture? the last time i checked, the former European Slave colony, with some Kalinago exception, have nothing Cultural. Religious belief, language, values, and some of the Food digested, cannot be termed Dominica Culture. Dominica’ borrowed way of life, have been handed down, first from the depictable French, Criminal England, and now the mantle is secured in the hands of the murderous USA, as they continue to strangle the Colony through their mass media of Cultural deception and destruction. A people wrapped in Bondage, allways tend to gravitate towards diminishing values, Fake Religious beliefs, and Rancid poisonous foods. Incurred in all these negatives, are the “Never see com see” of Dominica’ Ideals, that continue to Plummet the balance. Today, Dominica’ streets and Homes are ladened with uncultured material beliefs, humans with adverse Animal instincts, passing as Humane, fooling no one but themselves, as they live on the so-called Nature Island…

  2. Roger Burnett
    November 18, 2020

    Culture originated as a response by the people to their work and environment. It came from the heart of the people. It was not organized, nor was it considered a commodity, industry or tourist attraction.

    I mention this because I foresee a danger of focusing on past cultures as against promoting a present day living one.

  3. click here
    November 18, 2020

    These people that in the heads of ministries know nothing about art and so. For them culture is jut madrass and bele and food. Our schools have no music or art programs. If you are interested in art and craft as a young person, you on your own a lot of the time. Art programs desperately need funding. just look at the state of the “golden drum” behind raymond. We need suitable venues that coincide with the productions. Arawak isnt suitable for every event. We need outdoor spaces like amphitheaters. we need support for productions, like screenplay writings, theatre production, etc. As dominicans, i think we do not know how we really want to see ourselves as a nation. We say one thing then do another. often we just do nothing at all. building roads hospital bridges is what every government is supposed to do. But a government that is about its people will ensure that culture and other social aspects of the standards of living are always improved.

  4. Nkrumah Kwame
    November 18, 2020

    Raymond, who is the Finance minister?? Can’t you, a citizen, much older and more experienced in this discipline, be courteous, respectful, yet direct??
    Wait still 🥺🤗🤭😹🥵!!
    And what Dominica needs is a NAPA: National Academy of the Performing Arts. Remember, we have a BILLION dollars economy.
    HOTEP!

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