One of the most exciting arts events in the Cayman Islands, the 2018 Cayman Arts Festival, will take place next week, with a raft of international and local musical talent waiting to entertain local audiences.
Scheduled from Feb. 1-10, the events will showcase world-class performers, including Classical Mayhem, Romanian cellist Andrei Ionita, the duo of the Myriad Song, Christopher Gould and Geraldine McGreevy, and also celebrated talent KT Sullivan and four of her New York Cabaret colleagues: Carole J. Bufford, Eric Yves Garcia, Natalie Douglas and Jon Weber.
The Cayman Arts Festival also has a tradition of supporting various art forms in addition to music. For the first time this year, it will be including three fantastic fringe features, each at a different iconic Cayman location.
The festival and the Visual Arts Society have teamed up at Pedro St James for a celebration of music and art by the sea; then there is the Rising Stars event at the George Town Public Library, comprised of selected finalists from the Butterfield Young Musician of the Year competition; and finally, the National Gallery’s latest exhibition “Through Ivan’s Eye” by Gretchen Allen, which will bring together Christopher Gould, Geraldine McGreevy and the popular local a cappella group, the Singrays.
For the first time, local poets will also perform during these events, ensuring a truly comprehensive artistic celebration.
The Cayman Arts Festival 2018 Performers
Feb. 1 | Marriott Hotel Ballroom, 7 p.m.
Classical Mayhem was founded in 2013 by twin brothers Tim Armstrong-Taylor and Roland Taylor, with a mission to make classical music accessible to all through a unique and sometimes off-the-wall approach. For the 2018 Cayman Arts Festival, the Taylor brothers came with “Everything you always wanted to know about opera but were afraid to ask.” This show will be a journey through opera from Monteverdi to Modern Music. It will be a comic, enlightening, informative and entertaining concert through the history of opera from its inception to the modern day.
Andrei Ionita – Cello Recital
Feb. 3 | Camana Bay Cinema, 6 p.m.
Cayman Arts Festival never tires in its search for emerging artists. It offers its audience a glimpse into the world of international competitions and the budding careers of their winners whose performances energize and amaze, and helps the festival to maintain its status as a top Caribbean classical music event.
For the concert on Feb. 3, the festival’s artistic directors have chosen the best of the best, inviting one of the brightest stars of the contemporary cello scene, Andrei Ionita from Romania.
CAF and the Visual Arts Society
Feb. 5 | Pedro St. James, Savannah, 5:30 p.m.
This event presents an evening of visual art, music and poetry, with the participation of local singer Ericka Assai and poets from the Cayman Poetry Society performing in an historic setting.
Feb. 6 | Public Library, George Town, 6 p.m.
Rising Stars will feature selected finalists from the Butterfield Young Musician of the Year displaying their extraordinary talent.
CAF and the National Gallery
Feb. 7 | The National Gallery, 6 p.m.
Celebrate the sounds of music as the Cayman Arts Festival showcases a short recital by visting artists Christopher Gould and Geraldine McGreevy, followed by popular local a cappella group Singrays.
Doors open at 5 p.m. and the 45-minute performance will begin at 6 p.m., giving visitors an opportunity to view the National Gallery’s latest exhibition “Through Ivan’s Eye”: A series of photographs by Gretchen Allen remarkably transformed by the forces of nature.
Song recital: Geraldine McGreevy and Christopher Gould
Feb. 8 | Westin Hotel Ballroom, 7 p.m.
The Myriad Song develops a unique way of programming, putting the spotlight on the special qualities that each song contains. Rather than grouping songs by composer, poet or musical style, McGreevy and Gould build groups and sequences by combining songs which share a particular quality – perhaps an evocative image, a mood or a point of view. The result is an organic program which takes the audience on a journey through themes inspired by the songs themselves.
Their program “Far Reaches of the Mind” explores worlds that can only be reached in the mind, interweaving lyrics and music by a wide variety of poets and composers.
New York Cabaret Night
Feb. 10 | Marriott Hotel Ballroom, 7 p.m.
With a few days before Valentine’s Day, KT Sullivan and her colleagues, Natalie Douglas, Carole J. Bufford, Eric Yves Garcia, accompanied at piano by Jon Weber, will offer a gift to all lovers – a cabaret show “Isn’t It Romantic?” with love songs from the “Great American Songbook and Beyond”; songs that the audience probably knows and loves. They promise an evening full of musical surprises.
About the Cayman Arts Festival
Incorporated in 2003 by Glen Inanga and Jennifer Micallef – both world-renowned concert pianists – and Sharon Roulstone, a Caymanian attorney, the Cayman Arts Festival brings international artists to the Cayman Islands, and also showcases local artists.
Since its establishment, the festival has acted on its belief that education should be among its core purposes. This is embodied in the festival’s mission statement: “To bring world-class performing arts to the Cayman Islands to inspire, entertain and educate.”
Since 2004, more than 1,600 students have attended workshops or master classes with visiting artists.
The Cayman Arts Festival’s tradition of holding educational and cultural workshops for local students will be evident again this year, with all main performers presenting free educational concerts for students from public and private schools in Cayman.
Organizers noted that the 2016 festival was the most successful one since the inception of the bi-yearly event, with more than 200 tickets sold for the main events.
Ticket prices are US$45 for adults and US$15 for students for each event. Tickets can be purchased online at caymanartsfestival.com.