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CASYM Brings in the Holiday Season
with Performances from
its Youth Performing Arts Programs

CASYM Girl Steals Show

 

New York - It was 90 degrees in the shade less than two weeks ago as the When Steel Talks crew covered the Moods of Pan 2008 Festival in the beautiful island of Antigua.  Today we are a few thousand miles north and it is below freezing though sunny!  Despite the huge difference in temperature both places have captured our undivided attention for the same reason - the power of the steelpan instrument.

In spite of the intimidating chilly temperatures, the Brooklyn Museum auditorium was almost filled to capacity.  The all-round positive energy emanating from the organizers, parents and supporters was evident.  And as expected the CASYM (Caribbean American Sports & Cultural Youth Movement, Inc.) concert heated up the Museum with the musical instrument more associated with warmth, innovation and genius than any other.

Red, green and silver chrome were the colors of the night.  Red and green were for the holiday season and the gleaming chrome was the CASYM front line steelpans on stage.

This night is about the young people.  It is about the parents, and about the community.  In addition it is about CASYM as an organization and its legacy.   A society is judged on how it prepares its young for the future.  In this regard, CASYM as an organization has consistently been at the forefront of providing development opportunities for the youth.

Now in its 25th year of existence the organization has come full circle.  CASYM is an active and vital part of the New York youth development landscape as it relates to the performing arts, with the steelpan instrument as one of the main vehicles of the organization’s outreach.  The instructors of the CASYM programs include Michelle Williams, Joalene Griffith, Lakeisha Danglade, Travis Roberts, Anthony Lewis and Mathew Best among others.

There is a unique buzz and sound of exuberance that can only be generated by excited five-to-ten year olds waiting anxiously for their turn to deliver performances in front of a packed audience.  Couple this with the chatter of adoring and proud parents, family and friends - and you have the recipe for a very special and memorable evening.

The full complement of the arts was on display as CASYM’s students gave the audience a bit of drama, musical performance, poetry and dance.  First to take the stage was a bunch of pint-sized players made up of five and seven year olds, known as CASYM’s “Class One.”  Many of these young performers could barely be seen from behind the instruments they played.  In fact, most of the time what was visible to the audience were dancing feet as they performed ‘Give Love on Christmas Day.’ 

There was a terrific vocal medley delivered by Ms. Elizabeth Lewis that was followed by the CASYM Dancers. The very diminutive Isabel Lewis gave a rousing performance of a rap song that championed all of the virtues and benefits of being a “CASYM girl,” which included being on the receiving end of a standing ovation.

The CASYM dancers gave way to the Adult Class which is made of parents of students of CASYM who came together just to perform for this concert.  They were followed by Class Two - the more advanced students of CASYM’s music education program.  As the final act, it was the turn of CASYM’s stage side who closed the show with a bang.

Contact  CASYM at www.casym.com | Click here for more on CASYM  | (718) 735-6708/4932
 

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