The second night of the 2018 National Independence Festival of Creative Arts (NIFCA) semi-finals was a full showcase of the diversity and immense talent that the island has to offer.
The competition got underway in the Major Nott Hall at Combermere School with 13 performances consisting of dance, poetry/spoken word and music. Newcomers and regulars to the NIFCA stage gave their all on the semi-final stage with the determination to make the final leg.
Frederick Smith Secondary student, Theres Lambert, wowed the audience with her melodic voice. All eyes were on her as she belted Figures by Jessie Reyez and her self-penned single Weirdo to which she received resounding applause.
During the first half, spoken word artiste, Adiel Charles, spoke about the importance of recognizing your Afro Caribbean heritage with her piece Roots. During the second half, she broke down the struggles of those who suffer from depression and had thoughts of suicide. Her piece Oh Look! It’s Wednesday also explored feelings of inadequacy and overcoming these feelings one day at a time.
The second semi-final night was filled with musical performances from talented vocalists such as Shamona Forrester who sang Colours of the Wind and Dreams Come True and Kameisha Cadogan’s I Know Who I Am and her acoustic performance of Golden.
Renee-Simone St John who was brightly adorned in her pink dress had a small stature on the dimly lit stage, but her powerful voice echoed through the auditorium as she belted When You Believe to receive 20 seconds of applause from the audience.
Violinist Leandro Layne’s performance of his original pieces Forbidden and Holy Breath were welcomed as a breath of fresh air after all the vocalists.
The performance by Praise Academy of Dance entitled Por Siempre addressed the 1976 Cuban flight bombing which occurred in Paynes Bay, St James and resulted in the deaths of 73 passengers. The dance rendition captured the raw responses of Cubans after the news of the bombing and what was meant to be celebratory proceedings for the 24 members of the fencing team who died en route home.
Meanwhile, the Gospelfest Dancers closed the show on an exciting note with their colourful and energetic performance of Celebration. There were also performances by ADL Adrenalin, Kendra Roberts, Ayo Creative Ventures and Gentle Steps Academy. (KK)