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RBC Supports Jazz Artists in the Caribbean

Several emerging musicians from Saint Lucia took to the stage earlier this year to showcase their talent during the 2011 Saint Lucia Jazz Festival, courtesy of RBC. Since 1992, the Saint Lucia Jazz Festival has been drawing thousands of music lovers from around the globe to this idyllic Caribbean destination, and, this year, RBC supported this internationally acclaimed event, as it celebrated its 20th anniversary.

Born out of an effort to increase Saint Lucia’s tourist arrivals during the off-peak season, the Saint Lucia Jazz Festival is, today, considered the Caribbean’s premiere jazz festival; it has been ranked among the top three jazz festivals in the world by famous jazz impresario, George Wein, producer of more than 30 festivals worldwide; and was described as “among the best” by the late Motown recording artist, Grover Washington Jr.

With the RBC title sponsorship specifically allocated to the Side Stage performances of the Festival, Saint Lucians and the hundreds of visitors to the island had an ideal opportunity to experience Saint Lucia’s up-and-coming musical talent. Side Stage acts included The TEM Band, 4th World, and the Derek Yarde Project, which complemented the combination of acoustical and fusion jazz, and R&B that graced the main stage.

RBC’s presence in Saint Lucia dates back to 1920. For decades, RBC and RBTT have helped thousands of Saint Lucians realize their financial goals. Today, a combination of five RBC and RBTT (RBC-owned) branches are located throughout the 238-square-mile island, offering access to the company’s full range of products and services. The Side Stage sponsorship provided another opportunity whereby RBC could broaden the scope of its support in the community.

“The continuous enhancement and development of the Festival is made possible because of the unwavering support each year from our sponsors and partners,” said Saint Lucia’s Director of Tourism, Louis Lewis. “RBC’s title sponsorship of Side Stage enables us to continue to develop a core component of the festival and we are very thankful for their involvement.”

Nneka Luke, Regional Manager Corporate Brand and Sponsorships said: “Side Stage is just one event through which RBC supports emerging artists. RBC’s Emerging Artists Support Project has provided funding for more than 30 projects in Canada in areas such as theatre and musical performance, filmmaking, design and choreography.

“In the Caribbean, we have made significant inroads into extending the emerging artist footprint through increased sponsorship of such events as the Bahamas International Film Festival, the Reggae Film Festival in Jamaica, the Junior Calypso Monarch Competition in Saint Vincent and the Mutual Gallery and Arts Centre’s exhibition for established and emerging artists in Jamaica. Each of these sponsorships offers opportunities that raise the profile and advance the professional aspirations of the region’s up-and-coming talent,” she said.