JPAC celebrates the music, art, and culture of the Caribbean in Queens NY

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A report by Naeisha Rose for the Times-Ledger.

The Jamaica Performing Arts Center will hold a cultural festival on its front lawn in Jamaica called Spirit of the Caribbean from 12 p.m. to 5 p.m. Saturday.

The consulate generals of Jamaica, Saint Lucia, Barbados, St. Vincent and the Grenadines, and Guyana sponsored the event.

The other Caribbean islands represented at the fest include Haiti, Trinidad & Tobago, and the Dominican Republic, according to LeRoy Graham, the event’s organizer.

“We have people from various backgrounds and it’s going to be a very friendly, and warm atmosphere,” said Graham.

Providing food for the event, which is at 153-10 Jamaica Ave., are Caribbean Food Delights, Tower Isles Patties and The Door Restaurant.

According to Graham, guests will be able to have some roti, patty and other foods from throughout the Caribbean.

“People that come will get to experience the different kinds of food from the Caribbean,” said Graham.

Musical and dance acts include Andy Bassford on the guitar, Majid Khaliq on the violin, the Brown Rice Family performing a fusion of music from Japan, Haiti, Jamaica and Africa, pianist Jahlani, and the Devore Dance Center.

Some of the musical genres that will be performed by these acts include soca, calypso, reggae, kompa, jazz and R&B, according to Graham.

Graham will be doing a musical presentation on the different forms of music from the Caribbean with his group, the Truth Tribute All-Stars Band.

“We are going to do a presentation where we show the evolution of the music from mento, reggae, ska, rock steady, dance hall, soca, calypso and steel pan music,” said Graham. “This will be showing an evolution of the music.”

There will be artwork on display from Haiti, the Dominican Republic, Jamaica, St. Vincent, Trinidad and Guyana, according to Graham. People from the Dominican Republic will bring in cultural artifacts from their country.

“Everything about this is about the sharing of culture,” said Graham.

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