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Govt gives $58,000 boost to the arts

Bermuda will keep on drumming, dancing, painting and enjoying the arts for another year thanks to a $58,000 boost from the Ministry of Community and Cultural Development. Ten organisations received money from the Cultural Legacy Fund, created in 2009 in honour of Bermuda’s 400th anniversary. “The fund is aimed at promoting projects and events that are of national significance,” said Community and Cultural Development Minister Wayne Scott. “It is about further demonstrating Government’s dedication to the preservation and celebration of Bermuda’s culture and heritage. “Thus, the financial assistance provided by way of the Cultural Legacy Fund is but one means of supporting, preserving, promoting and celebrating our culture and heritage.” Eddie Ming received $7,500 for his Drum School and Rhythm Lab. He will use the money to his students to Cuba to study Cuban music. The school has been fundraising for a trip since 2011. “We have had several concerts to raise money and we have another one coming up called Evening in Old Havana,” he said. “We really appreciate this financial boost.” Filmmaker Lucinda Spurling said the $75,000 donation she received would go towards film workshops she had planned for the summer. The workshops will be taught by professional screenwriters, Jan Harlan and Jim Fernald. Both worked with Stanley Kubrick. “The Cultural Legacy Fund gave me half the funds, for the 30-person workshop so I am offering 15 places as scholarships, and will be offering 15 places for people to purchase,” Ms Spurling said. “It will be held at the Bermuda College the week beginning May 13. There will be a screening room and everything.” Karen Pollard, artistic director of the Bermuda Festival for the Performing Arts, said she was thankful for the $4,000 donation from the Cultural Legacy Fund. She said the community sometimes erroneously assumes that there is a lot of money behind the charity and that it does not need further assistance. “This money is specifically for our programme called Festival Freebies that is being done at lunchtime during the Bermuda Festival,” she said. Events include a flute and guitar concert, a poetry reading, a behind-the-scenes look at puppet making and performances by local students. Explained Ms Pollard: “The idea is that people who might feel intimidated about an evening performance at the Bermuda Festival can just come in at lunch time and see if they like it. “If they don’t like it they can walk out. It’s free. The idea is to make it very accessible to the whole community. A lot of people are out of work at the moment, so we thought it was something for them to do, also.” Other recipients included Bermuda Drumline Academy ($3,000), Bermuda Fine Art Trust ($5,000), The Chewstick Foundation ($5,000), St David’s Islanders and Native Community ($5,000), St George Marketing Committee ($5,000), Jaricco Dance ($5,000), artist Edwin M E Smith ($9,000) and writer Vincent Williams ($2,000).