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Grants help two Bermudians pursue their dreams

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Two Bermudian’s dream of the spotlight have been bolstered by the Gilbert and Sullivan Society of Bermuda.

Lauren Mendes and Onuri Smith were awarded the charity’s Marjorie Stanton Scholarship and John Barnett Scholarship to continue their studies of the performing arts.

Ms Mendes is pursuing her Bachelor of Fine Arts with a focus on acting for the theatre at Concordia University, while Mr Smith is studying musical theatre at the Italia Conti Academy.

Both have previously taken to the stage in Bermuda as part of past Gilbert and Sullivan productions.

Ms Mendes said she was grateful for the continued support of the charity as she pursues a career on the stage.

“My studies have given me the opportunity to focus on moving storytelling away from the traditional director's hands and instead into the actor's hands,” she said.

“This provides those performing the power to shape and control the narratives and allows them to accurately portray more diverse and representative stories.”

Mr Smith meanwhile said he felt honoured to be selected for the scholarship.

He added: “The support, experience and knowledge that Gilbert and Sullivan has given me has been invaluable and has led me to where I am today.

“I cannot express enough how much this means to me and I look forward to continuing my involvement in Performing Arts both locally and abroad.”

The Marjorie Stanton Scholarship and John Barnett Scholarship – named after former Gilbert and Sullivan Society presidents – offer their recipients at least $5,000 in academic support.

Katrina Kawaley-Lathan, Gilbert and Sullivan vice-president and head of the charity’s education sub-committee, said: “We believe that the arts and theatre in particular are an integral part of a healthy and thriving community, which allows individuals a place to develop their creativity, engage in self-expression and spread joy.

“While the pandemic has limited our activity on stage, the Society is committed to providing opportunities for the youth of Bermuda.

“This year's scholarship recipients are talented artists who have experienced the benefits of community theatre and who look forward to sharing their unique perspectives through their studies, workshops and performances.”

For more information about the Gilbert and Sullivan Society of Bermuda, visit www.gands.bm.

Onuri Smith, winner of the John Barnett Scholarship (Photograph provided)
Lauren Mendes, winner of the Marjorie Stanton Scholarship (Photograph provided)

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Published November 01, 2021 at 7:57 am (Updated November 01, 2021 at 7:57 am)

Grants help two Bermudians pursue their dreams

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