Wednesday, 24 May 2017

CULTURE VULTURE: Safiya Sinclair for Bookophilia + J’can actors land roles in Yardie + Children’s Gospel finals this Sunday

POETRY WITH BITE: Her acclaimed anthology, Cannibal (University of Nebraska Press) recently won the OCM Bocas Prize for Poetry and a handful of other literary awards on the US mainland, putting her squarely in the company of the most important Caribeban poets working today. But Jamaican audiences haven’t seen or heard from Safiya Sinclair, in the flesh, in a miute. The Montego Bay native, who currently resides in Virginia, is coming home. She will be the guest of honour at a special reading at Hope Road’s Bookophilia, where she will deliver selections from her ever-expanding body of work and, indeed, some choice pieces from Cannibal. The reading, which has been scheduled for Wednesday, June 7, is expected to draw a standing-room-only crowd, filled with poetry lovers no doubt eager to get their hands on an autographed copy of Cannibal

CHARACTER STUDY: According to reports, Jamaican actors Shantol Jackson (Sugar), Everaldo Creary and Sheldon Shepherd (Better Mus’ Come) are set to add their film credits, when they begin shooting scenes for Yardie, the feature-film directorial debut of Hollywood hotshot Idris Elba, who is now an honorary Jamaican. The film, a novel-to big screen adaptation, is expected to begin production this summer, with filming to take place in both Jamaica and England over the course of seven weeks. By all accounts, it’s a passion project for Elba, Golden Globe-winning actor and future James Bond (*fingers crossed*), who recently spent time in the island, meeting with stakeholders in the local film industry. No word yet on the planned release date for Yardie, but alongside Storm Saulter’s Sprinter, it’s among the most anticipated Jamaican-themed films in the works. 

KIDS IN PRAISE: Considered the junior version of the National Gospel Song Competition, the Jamaica Children’s Gospel Competition has grown from strength to strength, unearthing outstanding talents who’ve gone on to do wonderful things on the local and international music scene. This year’s competition comes to a close this Sunday, May 28, when the cream-of-the-crop entrants, in several age groups and categories (solo and group), vie for a range of attractive prizes, at the Ranny Williams Entertainment Centre. Setting the stage for a slew of cultural events in the run-up to the grand Jamaica 55 celebrations in August, the show begins at 5pm.

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