Talent 'nuff & plenty' for panto

Thursday, December 12, 2013    

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Dear Editor,

Jamaica is rich in customs and traditions. Like most Jamaicans I look forward each year to celebrating and commemoratng those mores which have added significantly to the quality of our lives. The pantomime, which opens on its traditional December 26 (Boxing Day), is one such custom. Over the years, the pantomime has become a main attraction for many Jamaicans, especially for those Jamaicans visiting home during the Christmas period.

The pantomime usually pokes fun at life in the Jamaica and provides much comic relief on what are usually serious issues in the society. This gives us an opportunity to laugh at ourselves; forgetting our problems even for a few hours. The pantomime has been a training ground for many of our best actors and it continues to produce outstanding talents in the field of theatre and the performing arts.

Jamaicans are very talented and creative people. In fact, our sons and daughters have dominated various fields globally, ranging from sports, medicine and music. Notwithstanding this, we need to ask ourselves, why is it that over the years the pantomime scriptwriter has not changed. In order to facilitate more Jamaicans being a part in the pantomime at the level of scriptwriting, why not have a competition for writers? The best judged script for that year would be produced as the pantomime.

As a society, we have not given sufficient support to the arts in Jamaica, whether from a private sector standpoint or from the level of government. Let us recommit ourselves to restoring the Ward Theatre for 2014. The Ward Theatre has been instrumental in honing the skills of many of our luminaries in the field of theatre. By restoring the Ward Theatre we will provide more opportunities and space for those in the creative arts to showcase their creativity and talent. Democracy thrives with a variety of views and ideas instead of having a monopoly of ideas. I look forward to seeing this year's pantomime The Golden Macca Fat.

Wayne Campbell

waykam@yahoo.com

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