Basseterre, St. Kitts, June 28, 2017 (SKNIS): The Annual St. Kitts Music Festival continues to reap many benefits for locals, which was evident at this year’s 21st edition of the entertainment event with high local involvement, says Minister of Tourism, Honourable Lindsay Grant, at a Sitting of National Assembly on June 28.
Minister Grant noted that 15 local bands performed at the annual festival.
“This figure represents 46.87 percent of the total number of performers at the festival an investment by this government of upwards of EC $90,000 to nurture local talent and artists in the federation,” he said.
The world renowned Third World Band helped in the nurturing of local talent, especially in the young with the hosting of a music development workshop.
“The Third World Band facilitated this year’s Music Development Workshop as part of the annual St. Kitts Music Festival fringe activities,” said the minister. “The group engaged over some 150 primary and secondary school students in drumming exercises before participating in a meet and greet and autograph signing in the downtown Basseterre area.”
Other artists, including Felicia Ross and Briannagh D, also visited schools to speak to the youth on various topics as part of the Music Festival Outreach Programme.
Talent booking agencies, who were VIP connected, donated school supplies to the Dieppe Bay Primary School during a visit for the 21st St. Kitts Music Festival as part of the drive to encourage youth in positive behaviour.
Frontstage at the Independence Square created an additional outlet to boost local musical expression by allowing an extra 12 artists to showcase their musical genius, said the Tourism Minister, noting that the St. Kitts Music Festival “expended somewhere in the region of EC$ 15, 000 on the procurement of folkloric and musical talent over the three day period, June 22ndto 24th.”
Additionally, local businesses were engaged in making the festival a success, said Minister Grant.
“In 2017 the total of some 30 food and beverage and catering vendors were given the opportunity to ply their trade at the festival,” he said.
He said that the festival had in the region of five local security firms complementing the Royal St. Christopher and Nevis Police Force and the St. Kitts and Nevis Defence Force in providing security and safety services at the venue.
Also, local cleaning entities were engaged to prepare and maintain the festival venue, while 10 ticket sales agents, 35 taxi and tour operators, 40 gate keepers, 25 production technicians were all employed by the Music Festival Committee.
The Tourism Minister said that the production of the 2017 music festival was undertaken by a part local production company, Caribbean Production Solutions.
“The new entity provides stage, lighting, sound and backline for the festival and is committed to growing local capacity in the area of event production,” he said.
The committee contracted a local marketing and public relations firm, VH Communications and Marketing Agency, to manage the promotional efforts of the festival, said Minister Grant.
Adding to the list of local entities contributing to the festival was Island Xpressions, which offered marketing support in several areas of endeavour.
Minister Grant said that the pro-video production, which continued for the third year to film and document the three day event, were all local.