Visitors and residents got a taste of local culture Saturday night at the annual Red Sky at Night event at the F.J. Harquail Cultural Centre.
Organised by the Cayman National Cultural Foundation, the evening featured local artisans, artists, dancers, musicians, storytellers and other live cultural demonstrations.
Henry Muttoo, artistic director of CNCF, said the purpose of Red Sky at Night is to embrace and connect all the cultures in the Cayman Islands, while keeping Caymanian traditions alive.
“A lot of the elements in the festival is pulled from the older Caymanian traditions, but at the same time, we understand that the culture has changed,” Muttoo said. “There are new elements, new people here, and they are bringing their own elements, which is now slowly becoming part of the culture.”
Muttoo said cultural traditions survive when a society remembers and celebrates them.
“If we don’t make those traditions survive, then what is going to happen? The people who grew up and understand a particular tradition or culture are going to feel lost in the society,” he said.
Denniston Tibbetts, president of the Seafarers Association, read an excerpt from the Southwell Years at the Caymanian Village section of the grounds. He said it is important to show everyone what Cayman is all about.
“Most people who come here or come to live here from overseas, they don’t know where we are coming from, so the last two years that I’ve been president, I been trying to promote the seafarers, and it’s very important to tell our story,” Tibbetts said.
Young dancers from Savannah Primary School attracted a crowd with their maypole dance.
Teacher Dorinda Wilson said the girls enjoyed working with Radiance Dance Studio to learn the traditional dance.
“It’s part of the Caymanian tradition of dance that used to be done a long time ago,” she said. “It’s learning to appreciate your culture and where you’re coming from and understanding that maypole actually incorporates other aspects of other dances, like modern contemporary and a little bit of the African rhythm.”