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Nevisian Songstress hosts recital showcasing growing talent of music students; advocates for music education

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by Eulana Weekes

St. Kitts and Nevis (WINN): Three vocalists and four pianists graced the stage at Venelle Powell’s 2023 Recital, held on April 23 at the David Freeman Center of Excellence, Gingerland.

The vocalists included Zhane Martin, Titlon Douglas Weekes and Rhonda Williams.

Venelle Powell, a recording artist from Nevis, said the vocalists were engaged in vocal training for a minimum of 8 weeks and were able to apply the learned skills to their on-stage performances.

The lessons taught, according to Powell, were Band Etiquette, Understanding Stage, mastering nerves during a performance, diction, listening skills, breathing techniques, and use of articulators, amongst others.

The four individuals engaged in the Piano music segment were Aunri Pemberton, Jaston O’Garro, Anjuá Pemberton and Alexa Pemberton.

The piano students had a minimum of 16 weeks of training. “They were taught  Basic Music Theory and Keyboard Skills, such as accurate fingering, maintaining correct time signature throughout the piece, and note accuracy,” Powell noted on social media.

The pianists also learned Band Etiquette, each presenting one piece with the band and learning to manage nerves during performances.

The musical instructor and songstress said the students performed excellently during the recital, which brings her great pride.

In a conversation with a WINN FM reporter,  Powell explained that the music lessons are ongoing and that students will continue to improve upon what they’ve learned thus far.

Powell stated, “I also have plans to officially open an official music school on Nevis so these ongoing training sessions are just warm up for the real show later. Music education is needed and I can’t stress that fact enough.”

Powell, who also teaches music at the Gingerland Secondary School in Nevis said, despite music being a free subject offer “the students don’t choose the subject because they don’t see a future in it. Their parents don’t see a future in it.”

The music teacher suggested that “having a career in music is no longer a dream of the 1990’s but a reality of the 2020’s.”

Additionally, Powell emphasized the need for sound engineers, trained vocalists, trained instrumentalists, stage runners and producers on the island of Nevis.

However, Powell, an artist on the 2022 line up for the St.Kitts Music Festival, suggested that, with the advancement of technology, tourism can be boosted and someone somewhere would see a music video from Nevis and may want to visit the island.

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