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‘Rhythms of The Bahamas’ Wins COB Short Film Festival

It’s often been explored, debated and showcased; the connection between Bahamian music and the preservation of national identity is a provocative subject. And it’s one that a small team of skillful filmmakers at The College of The Bahamas have captured for the big screen in a documentary called “Rhythms of The Bahamas”.

The short documentary made its debut at the 3rd Annual College of The Bahamas Short Film Festival held last week at the Oakes Field Campus. Produced by COB students from various academic disciplines, it was among six films that made it to the final round of screening. Over the last three years, The College has been creating capacity in filmmaking as well as providing the platform for the creative genius in this area to the celebrated.

Brittney Ambrister, pursuing a BA in Media Journalism at COB, was the lead editor for the documentary which took the top prize at the highly anticipated festival.

“It’s like an evolution of Bahamian music,” she explained of the film.

“It talks about the band. It talks about a certain aspect of our music such as storytelling. It talks about Goombay, Rake n’ Scrape and Junkanoo, and at the end it talks about how we can preserve our culture.”

Ambrister and her team, P-Giovanni Armbrister, Mick Massar and Brandyt Albury won a $1,000 prize, donated by the Film and Television Commission Department of the Ministry of Tourism and Aviation.

P-Giovanni Armbrister was co-director and videographer for the documentary and is “ecstatic” about their win.

Kareem Mortimer, Bahamian filmmaker, encouraged the student filmmakers to continue honing their skill.

“It was a really tough semester. We had to put in a lot of work for this one, thinking that it might have been easy because we already did it once, but [it was] still the same amount of work. I feel good that we actually won this film festival,” Armbrister said.

The short films: “Father May I”, “Turning Point”, “The List” and “Love Is Blind” also premiered at the festival. The intriguing plots and storylines addressed diverse social issues. There was also a documentary that traced the life of prominent Bahamian athlete, Leevan “Superman” Sands, titled “Superman Flies Again”.

It was an impressive display of talent, noted Bahamian filmmaker Kareem Mortimer, one of the judges.

“We were all very impressed by the quality of the work, by the sincerity of the voices, and the uniqueness of the stories that were told,” he said.

KayleaserDeveaux-Isaacs, Senior Deputy General Manager at the Broadcasting Corporation of The Bahamas and Angela Archer, Senior Manager, Film and Television Department at the Ministry of Tourism and Aviation also served as judges and were encouraged by the students’ level of talent. Mrs. Deveaux-Isaacs urged the film makers to continue to tell their stories. “Most of all it shows the quality of the students and the future filmmakers,” she said.

Ms. Archer suggested that The College collaborate with other partners throughout the Caribbean region so that the student films can be viewed by a broader audience.

The film festival was hosted by the School of Communication and Creative Arts at The College. Mr. Hugo Zarate, Journalism and Communication lecturer at The College, was the coordinator of the event. Dean of Faculty of Liberal and Fine Arts, Dr. Marjorie Brooks-Jones told the audience, “It always amazes me how much talent we have in a small country, but we are huge in terms of cultural ability, production and talent.”

The films will be added to the television lineup of ZNS and will air soon.

By Office of Communication,
The College of The Bahamas

Posted in Entertainment

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