DOMFESTA celebrates 30 years

Raymond Lawrence
Raymond Lawrence

Dominica Festival of the Arts (DOMFESTA) will usher in its 30th anniversary celebrations with major activities geared at raising awareness of the importance of culture in Dominica.

Chief cultural officer, Raymond Lawrence says the annual DOMFESTA festival slated from Friday 26 April-June 2, provides an opportunity for creative expression for local artists.

“DOMFESTA has allowed for the showcasing of many of our artists and craft persons through the years and has served to launch many of our artists to achieve greater heights,” Lawrence said.

He added that it is the hope of the National Cultural Committee and the Cultural Division that through DOMFESTA, the mission of building greater appreciation for arts and culture in Dominica can be continued and that the activities will give greater encouragement to our artists, poets, dancers and others.

“We hope that it will continue to inspire an entire new generation of artists who will in turn, help to strengthen our national identity as a people and as a nation,” he pointed out.

Meanwhile Minister for Culture, Youth and Sports Justina Charles noted that DOMFESTA involves a diverse mix of culture and stakeholders and is an avenue for economic activity.

“It provides an avenue for economic activity as artists seeking to develop their business ventures.  Such festivals serve as a link between the arts and our people.  Work of arts, poetry, drama or music are useless to society and the individual creator if they are not displayed and marketed. DOMFESTA thus creates an opportunity for performance of such creative work,” Charles stated.

She added that as a result of government’s policy which is geared toward giving support to artists, 61 artists including musicians, cultural groups have benefitted from the small business support unit with assistance in upgrading their equipment, and facilities.

Charles said that assistance, totaling $796,600, has created employment for 26 people on a part time and full time basis.

According to her, it is through actions such as these that we ensure the longevity and preservation of Dominica’s culture.

2013 DOMFESTA activities include three plays,Primary School Kweyol Spelling Bee Competition, DAME High Scorers Music Festival, Schools Art Gold Festival, Giraudel Flower Show and Pork Festival among other activities.

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