The Dominica Institute for the Arts has opened its doors to the general public.
The institute was officially declared opened by Minister of Culture, Youth and Sports Justina Charles at a launching ceremony held on Wednesday morning.
The new facility is a specialized arts training institution expected to serve Dominica and the Eastern Caribbean.
Housed at the Old Mill Cultural Centre and adjacent properties, it was established by the National Cultural Council and the Division of Culture.
Chief Cultural Officer Raymond Lawrence expects the Dominica Institute for the Arts to “serve as a multipurpose art studio and will provide additional and important space for artistic training”.
Lawrence in his address at the launch indicated that the institute is expected to assist both children and adults to give more meaningful contributions to culture.
Minister Charles described the occasion as a momentous one and declared the Institute a tangible example of the government’s commitment to culture and that of cultural infrastructure.
She also cited the upgrading of the Arawak House of Culture and developing a permanent festival venue as other examples representing the government’s interest in Dominica’s culture.
According to the minister, the institute will serve an important national need and promote Dominica as a cultural hub, and encouraged young people to take full advantage of the courses being provided by the institute.
Registration for courses there is now open and courses are expected to begin in September.
Part time courses include Art, Children’s Choir, Creative Dance, Drama, Drumming, Wood Carving and Kweyol Language.
The courses will be run by a team of tutors with experience in teaching various arts disciplines in Dominica and overseas.
A one-year foundation course/pre-degree in the visual arts is also being offered full time.
“Recognizing a child’s creative potential”, “Introduction to the Visual arts” and “Saturday Morning at the Old Mill” will also be offered as occasional courses.