Thursday, January 13, 2011

Giving back and loving it

GBPAS Founder Dalia Feldman

By Nathaniel Lewis

They brought us the "Broadway Baby," "Music for a Spring Evening," and even special guests from abroad in the form of the "NYC Comedy Club Show," just to name a few and in doing so, The Grand Bahama Performing Arts Society, a group of energetic and talented performing artists, are not only entertaining the residents of the Grand Bahamian Comm-unity, but giving back in a big way.

Founder and President of the Grand Bahama Performing Arts Society told the Freeport News that this venture all began 11 years ago when she first arrived on the island.

"I was so pleasantly surprised to see the tremendous amount of talent here. I got involved as soon as I could and quickly realized that although we had lots of talented kids, there was no funding to help them if they wanted to pursue the arts as a career.

"I wanted to do something about that, but it took me quite some time before I could because I had very young children at home and not much free time" she said.

Now, having been in existence for three years, under the vision "To foster growth and appreciation of the performing arts in Grand Bahama through access to a diversity of professional artists and performers from around the world."

Proceeds will benefit students of the performing arts on Grand Bahama Feldman says the Grand Bahama Performing Arts Society has produced a "wonderful" variety of shows from various areas of the performing arts, and has given students a chance to hone their skills through master classes and workshops conducted by member performers.

Feldman explained that season for the Performing Arts Society starts in less than two weeks with a "Chamber Music Concert" on January 22 which includes a "wonderful" program and three master classes the next day for piano, woodwind and cello and violin students.

Additionally, she mentioned that the 3rd annual Comedy Show is scheduled for March 12 as well as a talent contest for high school students where two will win a three week scholarship to French Woods Performing Arts Summer Camp (Flights included).

Besides the summer camp scholarships she said, a funding request form will be available shortly for any student, performing arts schools or programs in the community that may need some financial assistance.

Feldman stressed that she believes master classes are beneficial for both students and teachers of the arts.

"One can learn so much just by attending and being a part of the audience," she said.

"And more advanced students have the opportunity to perform for the experts and receive assistance on improving their skills. It is a wonderful experience for everyone involved. Everywhere else in the world master, classes start at $50.

"We offer these at a nominal fee because it its part of our mission to help the students and the programs here," she said.

Residents of the community interested in finding out more about The Grand Bahama Performing Arts Society, wanting to take part in a master class, or apply for funding, can get involved by contacting The Performing Arts Society at gbperform@gmail.com

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