One Blood to do it for charity

One Blood to do it for charity

By Aaliyah Cunningham
Observer writer

Friday, December 06, 2019

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DREDZ Productions raises its curtains tonight to perform for charity. Proceeds from the show are to offset the medical expenses of two-year-old Emilio McDonald, who is suffering from stage four eye cancer.

In an interview with the Jamaica Observer's Splash, Rashiem Shepherd — co-founder of DREDZ Production — said McDonald's story tugged at his heart and he had to do something to help.

“His mom, J-Lue, (Digicel Rising Stars' fourth-place winner) and I were batchmates in college and she reached out to me and told me what was going on with her son. The medical expense for these things are very high and we needed to do something to help, then I said why not put on a show to help her and Emilio,” he explained.

Shepherd, who received a Writer's Award at the 2019 Actor Boy Awards, said it is important for DREDZ Production to assist the youth in which way possible.

“DREDZ believes that there is purpose in every youth, so if we as a group of young people can unlock the potential of some other young people then they can grow while we ourselves are growing. That is a beautiful thing and from there the cycle can continue,” he said.

The group will be performing their award-winning play One Blood.

One Blood is the most relevant play in terms of the issues where a young man started off on the wrong path and eventually finds a way to turn his life around,” said Shepherd.

One Blood was nominated for 12 Actor Boy Awards earlier this year and walked away with three, including Best Sound, Best Drama, and Best New Jamaican Play.

This is the second charity event the group is to stage since the start of December. On Sunday, DREDZ partnered with Ardenne Preparatory School and Extension High School to stage Arts in Motion. Proceeds were in aid of the schools' Building Fund following a fire that destroyed sections of the institutions in September.

The curtains open on One Blood at 8:00 pm at the Phoenix Theatre in New Kingston.

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