In the beginning

October 1984 marked the official “birth” of the Cayman National Cultural Foundation with the passage of the CNCF Law.

The law was a milestone for Cayman, putting the seal on the government’s and the people’s acknowledgement of the value of the arts and culture to society’s well-rounded development.

But like any birth, a seed had been planted many months before, when longtime Cayman Islands resident and patron of the arts, Helen Harquail, became CNCF’s principal benefactor with the donation of the land and the funds needed to build the F.J. Harquail Cultural Centre, named after her beloved husband Frank J. Harquail. Mrs. Harquail stipulated that the people of the Cayman Islands would own the cultural center, which is also home to the 350-seat Harquail Theatre.

Building the $4 million theatre – the centerpiece of what was envisioned as a cultural hub – and landscaping the multi-acre property was a three-year process that began in 1983, culminating in the official opening of the Harquail Theatre in 1986 with a week-long celebration and the premiere of the musical “The Sound of Music.”


CNCF Artistic Director Henry Muttoo with Mercerita Bodden.

Comments are closed.