By Shakir Khan
If there’s on event that stirs great excitement and anticipation on Cayman Brac, it’s the NCFA GALA SHOW. It’s an event that reveals the abundance and variety of talent that is existent on the island. This year, 2020, was no different as on Thursday 20th February, the Aston Rutty Centre’s auditorium was packed to capacity with family and friends to witness the event. Gracing the occasion with her presence was the Minister for Education, Hon. Mrs. Julianna O’Connor Connolly.
Commencing just before 7p.m. Mrs. Kassandra Salazar, the High School’s Music teacher welcomed everyone and trusted that they will enjoy the show. Ms. Stephanie Williams, Music teacher for the Primary Schools then introduced the M.C. for the night, the veteran Mr. Mark Knowlton.
“I can’t believe it but this is the 38th annual NCFA GALA. I am thrilled to have been a part of this over the years and from what I have been told, tonight’s show is going to be exceptional,” said Mark. His remarks were followed by prayer by Pastor Chambers.
The High School’s steel pan band got things off to a rollicking start with two melodious items. So sweet was the rhythm that children and adults alike joined in with cheering and dancing. It was especially eye catching to see how the children were enjoying themselves to the strains of the steel pan sounds.
The performances presented were in music, folk, dance, recitation, drama and dialect. This year, instead of highlighting only the Gold and Silver pieces, performers were drawn from other categories to ensure a proper representation of what took place during the adjudicating sessions. Each item received thunderous applause and calls for encore from certain items could be heard from the audience.
There were some eye- catching performances according to those in attendance. 10 Green bottles by Deah Tatum from Little Cayman Educational Services, was well cheered. The dance presentation from Samaya Ritch of Creek and Spot Bay Primary School was one that received the greatest raves. It was scintillating indeed. Then there was a marvellous recitation by Yzara Ebanks from the High School titled, “The Monster In The Classroom.” Kids may now be looking out for that monster in the classroom. Another piece that had the audience holding their breath was the item “Happiest Man Alive,” on the steel pan by Taygan MacFarlane, from West End Primary School. “Rice Gwan,” a dialect piece from Suwayne Watson of C&SB Primary School captivated the audience. Ashlee Walton of the High School, rendered the song, “The Only One,” She had the crowd in hushed silence as they took in her performance that was soothing to the heart.
Mr. Paul Samuels, the new Principal of the WEPS, closed this exceptional with the Vote of Thanks. “What an array of fine talent displayed tonight. Cayman Brac is in good hands. Thanks to all who made the event spectacular and enjoyable.”
The Gala concluded just around 8:30 p.m.