Seaford Town, also known as “German Town” was founded in 1835 by settlers from Westphalia in Germany. It is widely regarded as having the strongest German cultural retentions of all the places where Germans settled in Jamaica. It is a Jamaican national heritage site, in the hills of Westmoreland, about an hour’s drive south of Montego Bay.
On Sunday, September 30, 2012 two events took place in Seaford Town, courtesy of the German Embassy. One was the handing over of the sanitary facilities which were built to be made available to visitors to the Seaford Town Museum on German immigration.
|Ambassador Josef Beck|
The appreciative audience was then treated to a classical concert which included the following items:
Nastassja Nass, soprano, singing ‘Lord I Obey”, the 1st Aria from ‘Jonah’ written by Samuel Felsted (1743-1802) organist at Kingson Parish Church in the 18th century. Natassja is a professional opera singer.
Instrumental pieces, by a number of composers, including Mozart and Saint Saens, for the following instruments: recorder, played by Rosina Moder of Music Unites; violin; viola, played by Kwame Kohl, a Jamaican who lives in Berlin. (His mother was one of the first members of Black Uhuru.); cello; French Horn; and trumpet.
|Violinist, Cellist and Violist (Kwame Kohl)|
|Piece for French Horn and Trumpet|
|Larkland Williams assisted by Dr. Althea Neblett|
After the musicians had taken their final bow, there was an impromptu item by Larkland Williams, a JUTA Tours operator, who performed the country and western ‘You picked a fine tome to leave me Lucille’ in German, much to the delight of Ambassador Beck and other German nationals.
As a token of appreciation, Jeremy Ashbourne, son of Peter Ashbourne, presented Ambassador Beck with a gift basket filled with local produce. Rita Hilton, Treasurer of the Seaford Town NGO, explained to the Ambassador what everything was.
After the classical concert, the Seaford Town marching band performed. The young people were well coordinated and entertaining, but unfortunately, because of the rain, they had to play inside the school instead of marching outside. The resulting volume was too loud for some of us, so we slipped out before they had finished.
I apologise for any errors and omissions in this post, which, as there were no programmes, I wrote from my own incomplete notes and internet searches. I had expected to see a report in one of the newspapers, but there were only photographs in the Gleaner’s Western Focus on Saturday, October 6. I would appreciate further input on this cultural event from my readers.