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REVISED – CNCF Launches Our Spring Season Programme and Looks Back on 2023

In our haste to share our news, we accidentally shared our earlier post in advance of completion. Please enjoy learning about CNCF’s news below.

As we launch into our new Spring Season here at the Cayman National Cultural Foundation, the Board and Staff would like to take a moment to thank our community for your support in 2023. It has been a game-changing year for CNCF as we completed our Strategic Revisioning Exercise, welcomed many new creative and educational partnerships, carried out facility and organisational upgrades, and hosted CNCF’s much-loved annual community festival schedule.
Highlights of our past 12 months include hosting such noteworthy new productions as the inaugural Wha Happening Comedy Show, written and directed by the extraordinary Matt Brown (born out of the legacy of the much-loved Rundown), the Red Boat Experience (Randy Chollette and friends), Oh Cayman Islands – A Musical Ode by Stuart Wilson and friends, the Cayman Islands Folks Singers Anniversary Concert, titled Under the Breadfruit Tree, and more – each funded and produced through CNCF. We have also enjoyed developing numerous creative partnerships with leading and smaller community-based initiatives including: the Cayman Islands National Dance Company, FloetryCayman Arts Festival, Cayman National Choir and Orchestra, Cayman Talent Expo, the National Gallery, UCCI, the Cayman Music and Entertainment Association, the National Children’s Festival of the Arts, and Cayman carnivals, to name a few….
We’ve welcomed more than 23,000 visitors through our doors to enjoy a programme of theatre, performing arts, music, literature, visual arts, that seeks to foster a vibrant cultural community across our FJ Harquail Cultural Centre and Mind’s Eye Centre sites, as well as hosting creative events in all six of Cayman’s districts. We’ve also focused on the expansion of Grants for the Arts opportunities to expand financial support for the creative sector and widen impact. All of this year’s Grants for the Arts recipients and their projects are now live on the CNCF website where you can learn about their remarkable creative achievements.
Other highlights included hosting our much-loved annual festivals Red Sky at Night (April) and Gimistory (November), welcoming 65+ creative students to our annual Summer Camp in collaboration with Pan n’ Riddim (July), introducing our new Teachers’ Social quarterly gatherings, and holding workshops in drama, folk music, dance, and steel pan. We have also carried out important conservation work on Miss Lassie’s Collection and Cottage and launched our expanded Christmas of Yesteryear (December) initiative at the Mind’s Eye Centre.
Simultaneously throughout 2023, we completed an institution-wide Strategic Revisioning Project. The SRP sought to build upon our strong artistic legacy while expanding CNCF into a cultural management organisation that is responsive to the needs of our creative sector and our wider Cayman community. As part of this exercise, we formally welcomed the Cayman National Choir and Orchestra as an official Resident Company of our FJ Harquail Cultural Centre.
We are incredibly grateful for the 100+ stakeholder groups and individuals who have contributed to our focus groups and one-on-one interviews, as well as all of you who took time to complete our online surveys. We’ve listened to your input and incorporated it into our new mission, vision, and Strategic Plan which we will launch publicly in late February.
Now, we are excited about the prospects and partnerships that lie ahead. We recently moved to the newly formed Ministry of Border Control, Labour and Culture and are looking forward to working with Minister Hon. Dwayne Seymour and his Team. We are also currently preparing for our forthcoming partnership with Cayman Arts Festival across multiple concerts in February, the production Echoes of the Past in honour of Black History Month (February), Red Sky at Night(March), our 40th Anniversary Celebrations, and many more workshops and productions in the coming months.
These programmes cannot exist without an audience, and we extend our sincerest thanks to all who joined us in making 2023 a remarkable year. Thank you for being an essential part of CNCF’s success, and here’s to the many creative opportunities awaiting us in the coming year!
Natalie UrquhartChief Executive Officer

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