Jazz Safari a great prospect for Antigua
Jazz musicians as well as the Antigua Tourism Authority have cited many expected returns, lauding organizer Tom Hinds, Managing Director of Damal Investments, for his innovation in bringing the festival to the region.
In welcoming the Safari to Antigua, after its successful January launch in Barbados, CEO of the Antigua & Barbuda Tourism Authority, Colin C. James said, “The Naniki Jazz Safari is a great addition to our local events calendar in Antigua & Barbuda and will allow us to showcase the destination as the idyllic backdrop for the smooth rhythms and sultry sounds of jazz.”
The authority outlined some of the positives derived from this and similar events: “Festivities such as these help to diversify a destination’s tourism product offering as well as differentiate it from other similar destinations. Residents and visitors are able to enjoy new cultural activities. Festivities such as the Jazz Festival encourage travelers to visit a destination….and are a great addition to an island’s Events Calendar.”
It is anticipated that the event will also develop the musical talents on Antigua, serving an educational component. The benefits are hoped to transcend generations.†
Canadian drummer, Archie Alleyne on the card for the festival, also touted the anticipated advantages to be reaped by hosting the festival: “It is extremely important and gives local musicians the opportunity to perform. Musicians study for years and need to be appreciated and this provides such a forum. They (musicians) need the exposure and the chance to increase the livelihood they have chosen.”
The acclaimed drummer said he expected an exciting time in Antigua and hoped the Safari would receive the support it needs. He added that Hinds put great effort into the event and should be commended.
The artist, who is no stranger to Antigua, having performed there in the past said the island is rich with talent, notably Roland Prince a well-known guitarist who has played with the great Miles Davis. He hopes the festival will inspire burgeoning musicians to continue in their chosen crafts.
The Antigua leg of the Naniki Caribbean Jazz Safari will feature, along with Alleyne, names such as, Cameron Pierre, Danny Mixon and Derek McKeith at the Dean William Lake Cultural Centre and the Shirley Heights Lookout.
The Safari is an extension of quality jazz events hosted by Hinds at his scenic Naniki Restaurant and Lush Life Resort in St. Joseph, Barbados. It debuted in Barbados on January 17 and will head to St. Vincent on its next stop.
Hinds hopes this will be start of a long-standing festival and has deliberately targeted countries that do not currently host jazz festivals with hopes of changing the regional jazz scene.