Concert will raise funds for Berkeley Educational Society
Phiemma Caisey’s father, Albert, put her on stage at the old Rosebank Theatre “and that was it”.
Then 8, she didn’t consider all the potential pitfalls of performing before a crowd — that they might not like her voice; that she might forget the words to the song; that she might fall off the stage — until somebody pointed to them.
“They asked me ‘Why aren’t you scared?’, I hadn’t thought about it until then,” she said. “And then I stopped. They say words shouldn’t affect you but they do. I didn’t have any fear before then.”
However her parents, Albert and June, were legendary Bermuda entertainers who drew the entire Caisey clan into their performances. A turnaround was inevitable. “I stopped for about seven years. I was a teen before I started singing again in a choir at Heard Chapel.”
Singled out to do a solo, she couldn’t say no. “I was probably nervous the first time but I did it,” she said.
In the years that have followed, she’s performed across the island on her own, with her mother and as part of bands such as Wild Honey and Soul Sisters and The Euphonics.
On Saturday she’s performing at a jazz concert at the Berkeley Institute honouring the late Edwena Smith.
A former teacher at the school, Mrs Smith was also “a devoted member” of the group behind the annual fundraiser, the Berkeley Educational Society. “I went to Berkeley and used to be part of the Alumni Association,” Ms Caisey said. “We put on events and I was one of the performers then.
“The Berkeley Educational Society asked me originally and, because I sing with The Euphonics and more than half of them are Berkeleyites, I said they might as well perform with me.
“It’s a good cause and should be a lot of fun. Good music and a great concert.”