Calabash: 10 years strong

Calabash: 10 years strong

Written by Editor

Topics: Parties & Festivals

After 10 wonderful years of the Calabash Literary Festival in charming Treasure Beach, St. Elizabeth, it was only fitting that the organizers would have “so much things to say” about the calendar event that continues to attract accomplished regional and international writers and hundreds of book lovers from home as well as abroad. Colin Channer, Justine Henzell and Kwame Dawes briefly shared their perspectives on the staging of this year’s event and reaching the 10-year milestone.


Colin Channer

I have to say that Calabash 2010 was an expression of all that is good about Jamaica and I am very happy that this small community of Treasure Beach has been able to maintain, for 10 years, a festival that now become a regional and international event…The incredible turnout of people despite violence in West Kingston [and] the rain across the island…just shows the commitment that people have to art and creativity in Jamaica.

Justine Henzell

So much things to say…as Bob Marley put it…10 years! We’ve said a lot and we’ve felt a lot. We’ve witnessed expressions of the written word, theatre and music. We’re just so grateful that we’re here 10 years later and we’ve been able to share this experience with so many people, both Jamaicans and foreigners who all come together for three days and nights in Treasure Beach to celebrate a community of culture and love.

Kwame Dawes

I think this is a beautiful occasion because of the response of the people. There were many things that could have prevented people from coming…the things happening in Kingston, the rain and all kinds of things that are discouraging, but the people came in their large numbers and this is a good a sign that the audience respects what we do at Calabash and trust us to do quality work all the time. It was a fantastic 10th anniversary event.

Calabash 2010 featured Nigerian writer, poet and playwright, Wole Soyinka (1986 Nobel Laureate for Literature), Bernice McFadden (USA), Billy Collins (USA), Sudeep Sen (India), Sharon Olds (USA), Russell Banks (USA), Nami Mun (South Korea), Helen Oyeyemi (Nigeria), Michael Holgate (Jamaica) and Ishion Hutchinson (Jamaica), among others.

Colin, Justine & Kwame

Colin Channer, Justine Henzell & Kwame Dawes, organizers of Calabash

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