Belize is currently being represented at an international event known as Carifesta in Suriname. The Caribbean Festival of Arts, commonly known as CARIFESTA, is an international multicultural event organized on a periodic basis by the countries of the Caribbean. The main purpose is to gather artists, musicians, authors, and to exhibit the folkloric and artistic manifestations of the Caribbean and Latin American region.
A delegation of 35 Belizean artists of different genres is currently participating in the 11th Carifesta in Paramaribo, Suriname. It’s a large contingency consisting of dancers, craft makers, fashion designers, literary artists, visual artists and a film maker.
The Belize National Dance Company will be putting their best foot forward in representing Belize with their very best cultural dance choreographies. The Galen Eagles Band, which includes members of the Garifuna Collective who just back from their successful tour of Canada and the United States, will be performing all the musical genres that make up Belizean culture, brukdong as well as punta and paranda.
Belize Delegation Heading to the Opening Ceremonies
For theatre drama, Belizean actors Jael August, Carson Perrote, Rushelle Babb and Alexander Viveiros will perform their production “My Body is Precious”. The fashion section is being led by Jackie Castillo, and including fashion designer Joris Hendrik-Groenendaal and jewelry designer Khadija Assales, and artisans Aurelio Sho and Adelia Ishim.
Shelby Castillo represents Belize’s film production and media arts and Karen Vernon of the Institute of Culture and Arts heads the delegation. The President of the National Institute of Culture and History, Diane Haylock will represent Belize, deputizing for the Minister of Tourism and Culture, Hon. Manuel Heredia. The delegation left Belize on Wednesday, August 14, and is due back in Belize on August 27.
The cultural village life of CARIFESTA is intended to be a mixture of the States of the Caribbean Community (CARICOM); the wider Caribbean, Latin America; and a representation of Africa, Asia, Europe and North America.
It is a vision of the peoples with roots deep in Asia, Europe and Africa, coming together to perform their art forms and embracing literature inspired by the Caribbean’s own peculiar temperament; paintings drawn from the awe inspiring tropical ecology; and the visionary inheritance of our forefathers.
CARIFESTA XI is to be the celebration of ‘Caribbean Culture and an excellent good time for all’; at the same time: ‘Celebrating our diversity and promoting the central role of culture in economic, social and human development’.