Features

Petronilla Deterville’s Work Highlighted

Image: Chairperson of the Nobel Laureate Week Committee, Governor-General Dame Pearlette Louisy, seemed enthralled by the day’s proceedings. [PHOTOS: Stan Bishop]

Late Music Icon’s Life Celebrated Through Music, Dance and Drama.

Image: Chairperson of the Nobel Laureate Week Committee, Governor-General Dame Pearlette Louisy, seemed enthralled by the day’s proceedings. [PHOTOS: Stan Bishop]
Chairperson of the Nobel Laureate Week Committee, Governor-General Dame Pearlette Louisy, seemed enthralled by the day’s proceedings. [PHOTOS: Stan Bishop]
Nobel Laureate Week continued last Sunday with a special tribute to the late PetronillaDeterville.

Deterville, who passed in October, 2010, founded the Cecilian Rays, a musical group from Anse la Raye, in 1981. The main aim of the organization was to improve the quality of life for young people living in that West coast community.

YouthSPAC, Silver Shadow Dance Academy, Zenaida, Charles Cadet Youth Orchestra and Yannick James formed the cast at the National Cultural Centre last Sunday afternoon that honoured the late music specialist’s life.

Image of The late PetronillaDeterville
The late PetronillaDeterville

Kentillia Louis, Artistic Director, YouthSPAC, told The VOICE that the activity was a labour of love for a woman who taught a generation of Saint Lucians whose work now embodies her passion and spirit.

“Sometimes we forget to remember our elders, many of whom built the path for us,” Louis said. “But you can clearly see that a lot of the young talent that has come out in this production is as a result of the work Mrs. Deterville did. So we felt that we needed to do something by which to remember her.”

Image: Silver Shadow Dance Academy’s dance steps were right on time. [PHOTOS: Stan Bishop]
Silver Shadow Dance Academy’s dance steps were right on time. [PHOTOS: Stan Bishop]
The theme of the two-hour production was “Life in the Village”, was a musical conceptualized by Deterville considered to be groundbreaking at the time since it encapsulated village life through folk songs and portrayed by the Cecilian Rays.

Louis said Deterville’s influence was so immense that the groups were quick to sign on to Sunday’s production without hesitation or concerns on financial matters.

Image: The small but appreciative audience was all smiles. [PHOTOS: Stan Bishop]
The small but appreciative audience was all smiles. [PHOTOS: Stan Bishop]
“Her specialty was giving Saint Lucians an understanding and appreciation for the island’s folk songs, many of which she composed, including “DomiIshMwen” (“Sleep, My Child”),” Louis said.

Image: What would Saint Lucian village life be without an occasional round of storytelling? [PHOTOS: Stan Bishop]
What would Saint Lucian village life be without an occasional round of storytelling? [PHOTOS: Stan Bishop]
Stan Bishop began his career in journalism in March 2008 writing freelance for The VOICE newspaper for six weeks before being hired as a part-time journalist there when one of the company’s journalists was overseas on assignment.

Although he was initially told that the job would last only two weeks, he was able to demonstrate such high quality work that the company offered him a permanent job before that fortnight was over. Read full bio...

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *