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Briland's Hogheads Band Showcase At Bahamas Heritage Festival
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Posted by:Mar 19th 2003, 02:02:19 pm
Fig Tree News TeamCombing the Islands for Tradition Bearers

Nassau Guardian
March 2003

From Abaco in the North to Inagua in the South, tradition bearers from all over The Bahamas will converge on Arawak Cay for the staging of the first Bahamas Heritage Festival in March. According to Angela Cleare, festival coordinator, a strategic plan was followed to ensure that every island was represented at the festival as was done for the 1994 Smithsonian Festival of American Folklife.

Researchers traveled throughout The Bahamas to find persons who are best in foodways, boatbuilding, storytelling, children's games, music and dance, Junkanoo and indigenous crafts. Philip Burrows, the festival's curator noted that as a result of the research, patrons to the festival will see the things that make each island unique, and are infinitely Bahamian.

Burrows also revealed that the research included sifting through material from the 1994 Festival and doing new field searches. The result is a combination of persons who have participated in the previous festival and new tradition bearers. There will be approximately 200 persons featured during the five-day festival.

Julia Burnside, head of the Foodways cluster revealed that members of her team traveled to Exuma, Eleuthera, Grand Bahama, Inagua and Mayaguana to search for persons skilled in rock oven cooking, breadmaking, bush medicine, Bahamian deserts and preparing conch.
Some of the persons in the foodways cluster include Rowena Hepburn from Cat Island demonstrating flour cake making and Anthony "Tony Macaroni" Hanna who is famed for his grilled conch. Hanna, who was chosen for the Minister of Tourism's Award for Hospitality at the latest Cacique Awards, and Hepburn are veterans of the 1994 Festival.

Andros, bush medicine specialist Daisy Nottage will share the spotlight with her Nassau counterpart Millie Sands while Nassau's Ed Moxey & Der Budders might engage in a friendly rake n' scrape duel with Long Island's Thomas and the Boys on the secular stage.

Students from the Hope Town School located in Abaco will demonstrate quill pen writing and dress in Loyalist-period costumes -- traditions that were handed down to them from their ancestors who settled in The Bahamas in the early 18th century.

Eleuthera will be represented by storyteller Henry Sands, the Briland Hogheads, Loran Bastian and Una Gibson in foodways. There will be boatbuilders from Ragged Island, Abaco, Andros, Exuma, Bimini and Nassau.

Mabel Williams, a storyteller from San Salvador will recount her experience living through the 1922 hurricane, while perennial favourite James Catalyn will showcase the humour in Bahamian oral tradition.

The organisers are satisfied that many of The Bahamas' finest tradition bearers will combine to showcase the richness of Bahamian culture.

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