Twenty-one-year-old Katani Lewis, whose dream is to attend the American Musical Dance Academy (AMDA), held a benefit concert at Operation Triple Threat’s headquarters in Rockley, Christ Church, last Saturday in pursuit of that objective.
The show, which was originally scheduled to be held at the Black Rock Cultural Centre, started promptly and the performers brought out their “A game” as they showcased song, tap dance, soca as well as poetry to raise funds for their friend Katani.
This year’s People’s Monarch, Sanctuary, lifted the room as he rendered his hit song Pick Me Up.
Kwesi Perry, a second year student at AMDA, thrilled the audience with a tap dance solo. Perry has been tap dancing for just one year but he impressed with his skills as he twirled, spun and kept the crowd entertained to the song I Got Rhythm.
He was followed on stage by veteran entertainer, Anderson Mr Blood Armstrong, who sang his 2017 soca song Look Fah Me which was well received by the audience who clapped and sang along to the lyrics.
The next performer was a Honey Jam and Operation Triple Threat graduate, Mikki, who is also a student at AMDA. She thrilled the audience with her rendition of two popular reggae songs, Is This Love by Bob Marley and Lioness on the Rise Queen Ifrica.
Dressed in a red, gold and green knitted shirt and black slacks, Mikki’s locks flowed as she engaged the audience to sing along to the two classics.
The next performer needed no introduction from Master of Ceremonies Adrian Greene. NIFCA award winner and a former Junior Monarch Chad Montpleisir showed a different side of his vocal talent as he expertly performed a rendition of Being a Geek by John Browne. He thrilled the audience with both his vocal range and dance moves.
The last act before intermission was none other than Katani Lewis himself, who sang five of his favourite songs, including , Greased Lightning Tell Me Why, and Never Find. He was assisted by Chad Montpleisir, Charlene Morris, Kwesi Perry and Mikki.
His rendition of Greased Lighting was the most dynamic of all the performances, as he showcased why he should be allowed to enter AMDA. He danced while singing in key, his lines of the song. He was truly dynamic in his delivery of the lyrics, and one could tell that he was putting his heart and soul into the song.
After the intermission, the audience was thrilled with a performance from Operation Triple Threat Alumni as well as B4Kynx who delivered a thought provoking spoken word piece that went down well with the audience.
Despite the enthusiasm and the all-star cast that came out to support Katani, there is a probability that Katani unfortunately may have yet again to put his dream of attending AMDA on hold as he is still short of $30,000 to begin his studies.
“I am pleased with the turnout, we had about 100 persons here. Unfortunately, 100 persons being here will not pay for my tuition but I am happy that they are here. Right now, I would need to raise $30,000 more,” Katani said.