JIS News

Story Highlights

  • Entry forms, rules and other details of the competitions can be obtained from the JCDC’s website at: www.jcdc.gov.jm or at the agency’s parish offices.
  • The Children’s Gospel Song Competition accepts both covers (previously recorded) and original songs.
  • Persons can compete in the solo, choir and ensemble categories.

The closing date for entries in the 2014 Jamaica Cultural Development Commission (JCDC) Children’s Gospel and the Gospel Song Competitions is Friday, January 17, 2014.

Entry forms, rules and other details of the competitions can be obtained from the JCDC’s website at: www.jcdc.gov.jm or at the agency’s parish offices.

The Children’s Gospel Song Competition accepts both covers (previously recorded) and original songs from participants from schools, churches and community groups across the country. Persons can compete in the solo, choir and ensemble categories.

Director of Marketing and Public Relations at the JCDC, Stephen Davidson, told JIS News that over 250 entries have been received in the various categories since the agency began accepting entries in October last year.

“We received over 250 entries and we are hoping to surpass that number, because we want it to be broad and to reach Jamaicans all over the country,” he said.

Mr. Davidson explained that the children’s gospel competition, which has been divided into two groups (six to 10 years and 11 to 15 years), allows children to express themselves through any genre of music.

He pointed out that unlike the children’s competition, entries for the Gospel Song Competition must be original. It is open to solo and ensemble of not more than five persons who must be Jamaican citizens or persons who have resided in Jamaica for a period of not less than two years at the closing date of entries.

Mr. Davidson said this competition seeks to inspire and foster spiritual development, while encouraging writers and vocalists to challenge themselves to become the best performer of the year.

He explained that the cut-off date for the competitions was set to give the organisers enough time to review the entries and to confirm the dates and times for auditions.

“We try our best to accommodate the participants, so if we see most of the entries are from the northern parishes, then we will definitely have to have auditions in a central location in Ocho Rios or in St. Ann, so that everyone can benefit,” he added.

After the auditions, workshops will be held to sharpen the performance skills of the contestants. These are scheduled to take place in February and March at locations based on the number of entries received.

Mr. Davidson noted that each year participants are exposed to a series of workshops that are addressed by professionals.  “A part of the JCDC’s mandate is about the development of youth and so our workshops and training programmes are very important,” he said.