Powerful performances on show

Thursday, June 14, 2018

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FOR three hours, 200 performers held the audience's attention at the 18th Powerful Women & Men Perform for Charity show held last Sunday in the National Indoor Sports Centre, St Andrew.

“This is one of the largest crowds we have had at the show over the past 18 years, and I wish to thank all members of the planning and production committees, as well as the traditional and social media partners who provided outstanding promotional support,” said Cordel Green, chairman of the Powerful Women & Men planning committee.

The show opened with its theme song ( The Will), co-written by Ewan Simpson and Oshin Levy, and performed by Michael Powell, Rosemarie Lee, Levy's Heritage, Ashe and One Third. The latter also premiered their song Survivor, supported by Dance Theatre Xaymaca, in tribute to pesons who have endured poverty and prejudice.

Ali McNab's set with Carlene Davis brought the house down. Arranged by Ashe's Conroy Wilson, they were supported by the Ashe Company singers. A former Boys' Town and Jamaica footballer, McNab is a competent guitarist and singer who once performed on the north coast.

Ashe, celebrating its 25th anniversary, showed customary verve. So too the Seaforth High School Band, and 8 Band out of Jamaica College.

Blossom O'Meally-Nelson made a welcome return, telling the audience that she had been travelling by the new airline 'Airbnb'. Green, the Broadcasting Commission's executive director, dressed in an exaggerated afro and cleric garb, “confessed” to indiscretions as a pastor with a “Sis Kitty” and other sisters in his church.

The First Responders, featuring the uniformed Jamaica Defence Force private Jason Brown and Jamaica Constabulary Force Seargent Rosemarie Lee, stirred the crowd. The popular Six Pack Singers also had the audience swaying to the songs of yesteryear, while cabaret veteran Nicky OJ's dance moves during his set with Ainsley Deer got the audience excited.

Among the first-time performers were Christopher Barnes, COO of the RJR/Gleaner Communication Group; Attorney General Marlene Malahoo Forte; Father Ho Lung; Stephen Shaw, National Works Agency's communications manager; Emilio Eubanks, senior deputy commissioner of the Jamaica Fire Brigade; football coach Miguel Coley; Marlon Simms, the National Dance Theatre Company's artistic director; Olayinka Jacobs Bonnick, director of the British Council, Jamaica & Caribbean; Ingrid Christian Baker, general manager, Jamaica Private Power Company; Miss Jamaica World Solange Sinclair and Miss Jamaica Festival Daidlyn Swaby; Emily Shields, broadcaster and attorney-at-law; Yhordanka Akwanza, CEO of Eyeland Eyewear; and Carmen Rives Ruiz-Tapiador, deputy head of mission, Embassy of Spain, who presented Spanish poems which she translated to patois.

A number of them participated in a fashion show in designs by Courtney Washington Designs and Dexter Huxtable of Spokes Apparel. FHL Designs of Old Harbour also provided outfits for the show.

Returning for the second time was Juliet Holness, wife of prime minister Andrew Holness, who worked the stage with the energy of a professional model in an exclusive, form-fitting outfit designed by Shenna Carby.

Roman Catholic priest Father Howard James, who was a hit last year, strutted his stuff in the latest suits, featuring a jacket and calf-length dress pants.

Since its inception, the Powerful Women & Men Perform for Charity Show has raised over $80 million. It benefits the Mustard Seed Communities, which cares for 600 abandoned and physically challenged children, some whom are suffering from HIV-AIDS.

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