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Tivoli dancers pay tribute to Seaga

BY AALIYAH CUNNINGHAM
Observer writer

Wednesday, July 10, 2019

The Tivoli Dance Troupe presented a Kaleidoscope of Dance at the Little Theatre in Kingston on Sunday evening. The two-day concert, which opened last Saturday, is part of their 28th season celebration.

Supporters packed the theatre, anxious to see the presentation and they were not disappointed. From costuming, to choice of song and choreography, the production was of high standard.

Both junior and senior members gave stellar performances that depicted aspects of Jamaican culture as well as stories of hardship, joy, and struggle.

The audience, delighted by the magnificent display, cheered and gave standing ovations. Stand-out pieces included Pickney Jump Up by the Weeny Tots who showed their ability to give a clean, entertaining performance. Their second piece for the night, titled Kiddies Rock, was also well-received.

Junior and intermediate members of the troupe gave electrifying performances as their colourful costumes and wonderfully-delivered choreography, stunned the crowd. From jazz to dancehall, every piece was seamlessly performed. They, much like the Weeny Tots, underscored the meaning of 'lickle but tallawah'. Seniors displayed flexibility and high energy with their pieces.

The Tivoli Dance Troupe is one of Jamaica's premiere groups. It was conceptualised in September 1991 and developed in West Kingston, constituency of former Prime Minister Edward Seaga, who died in May.

It was only appropriate the dancers pay homage to him during the show. Five of the pieces were dedicated to his life and work.

Jennifer Garwood, founder and director of Tivoli Dance Troupe, said the show affords children an opportunity to display their talent.

“Most of the children are from this community that is so often stigmatised. So, seeing them on that stage, showing what they can do, is what we are aiming for yearly. This gives them a chance to build up their confidence and have people come out and support what they are doing and what they have worked so hard on, and it's a very beautiful thing,” she told the Jamaica Observer.

Garwood also said when they put on the show annually, it is not about the people who come to watch, the focus is on the talent that is on display. The highlight for her was seeing children show their skills.

Paul Lee, a patron at the event, agreed.

“For them to learn the moves and be consistent, it shows a lot of work and patience and determination. You can tell where a programme is going by its children and so I thought it was a wonderful show,” he said.

His comment was supported by Marie Livingston, who said: “The show was very entertaining, especially the little ones. The costumes were fabulous, really a kaleidoscope of colours. The dances were pretty good, it was my first time seeing the group upfront and I really enjoyed it.”