About four years ago, the National Cultural Foundation’s (NCF’s) Cultural Officer – Dance, Dr. John Hunte, created a dance summer internship programme in an effort to develop the discipline here in Barbados.
This programme follows the progress of approximately 12 interns through their experiences in a pre-professional dance environment, as they work alongside professionals in the field and as they gain exposure by participating in the NCF’s Crop Over events.
It caters to individuals 17 years and over enrolled in tertiary institutions and dance fraternities, giving these aspiring dancers a chance to increase their knowledge and skills, while gaining exposure and feeding their hunger for dance.
A number of instructors both locally and internationally are invited to train, to support and to help participants develop their passion for dance throughout the course of the internship. The sessions include various genres of dance which help with the intern’s growth. They also incorporate performance etiquette, advancing and perfecting skills and disciplinary conduct.
These summer sessions are supervised by Assistant Dance Coordinator, Mr. Rene Blackman, himself a successful graduate of the NCF’s Dance Internship Programme. For 25 hours a week, Monday to Friday from 10:00 a.m. to 3:00 p.m. you will find the dedicated summer interns practising and training in the NCF dance studio. This year, the programme commenced on May 18 and will end on August 9. For the duration of the dance programme, interns will be offered honoraria which will be based on attendance, participation, performance and effort.
This dance intensive summer programme culminates with the Barbados Dance project coordinated by Mr. Jamal Callender, who will be bringing in a team of international dance professionals to conduct further training sessions free of cost. The project usually ends in a showcase where the interns get the chance to display their growth throughout the season.