Anyone who missed a chance to see “Rundown” this time around and was disappointed to hear it was sold out last weekend, can now buy a ticket for an extraordinary performance on June 10.
The cast and crew are coming together one more time to raise money for one of their own, George Jones, who has been battling serious illnesses for more than five years. Although he recently received good news that should significantly improve his life, his medical bills are burdensome. Therefore, this final performance for the 2016 run will be entirely focused on helping him financially.
Mr. Jones is a top Barbadian musician and founder of Square One, one of Barbados’s and the Caribbean’s most successful bands.
He has been resident in Cayman Islands for the past 11 years with his wife and youngest daughter, and joined the Cayman National Cultural Foundation as a volunteer six years ago, mainly as a musician, arranging songs for “Rundown.” He has done this every year since, even facing his fear of acting when he agreed to appear in “Rundown 2015.” Not only did he arrange music for the show, he also acted and sang.
No one in the cast knew of Mr. Jones’s illness. He attended rehearsals like every other cast member, even on the days when he had to go in for dialysis. He never spoke about his health challenges, even though he looked tired on a number of occasions.
“It was not until late in the 2015 process that I and the cast found out he was battling a serious illness,” said Henry Muttoo, artistic director of the CNCF. “Just before he got the sudden, but welcome, call that a kidney was found for him, he was sitting in my office for two hours, discussing the musical numbers for ‘Rundown 2016.’
“He had already completed four tracks and left the office to work on another five. A few days later, I received an email from him telling me that he had to fly out in a hurry the following morning for a transplant operation.
“George’s operation was successful and he is recovering, though he must remain near the hospital to allow his medical team to be able to respond quickly, if necessary. The cost associated with the operation, as well as living expenses in Florida, is beyond what George can afford. We are pleased to be able to remount Rundown 2016 to assist George with defraying his medical expenses. The board has decided that he will receive the full net proceeds from the remounting of the show. It is our hope that this effort will be supported by many people, and that we’ll sell out this performance,” Mr. Muttoo said.
Years of battling a series of chronic illnesses and being unable to find gainful employment as a result has severely impacted his family’s resources, financial and otherwise. To this end, a few of his friends have set up a GoFundMe account where local and international contributions can be safely made to assist his cause.
If you cannot make the performance of ‘Rundown,’ but would like to contribute, you can donate at www.gofundme.com/George-Jones.