Wednesday, 23 July 2014

TOP FIVE: Pop-culture News and Notes We're Talking About

BRAND NAME: A close cousin of the one he shot for Visa's World Cup campaign, Usain Bolt's latest TV ad spot for Sir Richard Branson's Virgin empire is a picturesque clip that shows off the track superstar's playful and sporty side while playing off his trademark physicality and athleticism. It's currently being shown exclusively on UK television, but YouTube has a clip that can be viewed any time, anywhere across the globe. Meanwhile, the World's Fastest Man will next be in action at this week's Commonwealth Games in Glasgow, Scotland. 

FATHER FIGURE: A host of dignitaries, both local and overseas-based, are expected to be in attendance on August 8 when former Governor General and educator par excellence Sir Howard Cooke is given a rousing farewell service at the Holy Trinity Cathedral in Kingston. Sir Cooke, who passed away at age 98 a week ago, is being accorded a state service. Reflects PM Portia Simpson-Miller, "It's impossible to overemphasize [Sir Howard's] contribution to this nation, which he served with distinction, passion and selflessness." 

GOING FOR GOLD: Widely considered a fine specimen in the tradition of Lisa Hanna and Christine Straw, newly minted Miss Jamaica World, Laurie-Ann Chin, is expected to rep the island in stunning fashion when she competes for the global title in London this December. "It has always been a dream of mine to be an ambassador for my country," says the 22-year-old Chin, who (in addition to copping the Best Figure sectional prize at the MJW coronation show earlier this month) earned a university scholarship, a Sandals vacay, and a sparkling new Audi A3 motorcar. 

DIRECTOR'S CUT: The wait is finally over. New Caribbean Cinema has confirmed August 13 as the date for the long-awaited Jamaican premiere of Ring Di Alarm, the film collective's acclaimed vignette-style production that won critical huzzahs on the festival circuit all of last year and features the work of seven filmmakers, including Storm and Nile Saulter, who continue to blaze a trail as fiercely independent and keenly observant storytellers. Carib Cinema will play host for the event. 

PRIDE OF A NATION: It's that time of year again when Jamaica Festival seizes the national spotlight with a series of events (culminating with the Grand Gala at the Stadium on Independence Day) aimed at showcasing aspects of our rich and dynamic cultural heritage - and perhaps more importantly it's continued evolution. There will be no shortage of highlights as in years past, but TALLAWAH is especially looking forward to the inaugural Heart of Ska Festival (august 2), the Dutchie Food Festival (August 3) and the Aunty Roachie Film, TV and Literary Festival (August 5). If you will be in the capital this Emancipendence week, do make the Ranny Williams Entertainment Centre your home away from home.

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