Gavin Mendonca sheds some light on the tribulations faced by Guyanese creatives as he urges more support for these individuals.
Guyanese Musician and Directors of Rupununi Music and Arts Festival Gavin Mendonca laments the lack of support for persons within Guyana’s creative industry.
“It’s a tough life to choose, being a musician or a creative in general in Guyana. If you interview any artist, they would tell you more challenges than there are successes. At the end of the day it’s about doing what you love and it’s about staying true to yourself.''
Mendonca is well-known locally for his musical pursuits, having showcased Guyanese culture through his craft numerous times on the global stage.
He performs folk music with his performing partner ‘Chucky’ and is a member of local rock band ‘Feed the flames’.
Mendonca wants more to be done in terms of providing arenas for persons to showcase their craft/talent and financial support to sustain this as a career.
“I only wish that the powers that be would present a better atmosphere for creatives to thrive in Guyana. Not that there haven’t been any efforts in the past by our leaders, but there’s always more to be done. There is always more resources to be invested into the development of the creative and cultural industries.”
Mendonca added that he has observed new talent emerging in Guyana’s creative industry over recent years.
“Sometimes you need a shutdown to be able to really come back to self and take a look at things. So, while the pandemic was devastating in many ways, it allowed creatives to sit down by themselves and to conjure up new ideas, new thoughts, new approaches to the work that they do. So I think it had its benefits. And now, with the world reopening, I think creatives are more eager than ever to get back out on the scene.”
He is one of four Directors for the Rupununi Music and Arts Festival, first music festival in Guyana. It was birthed in 2014 at Rock View Lodge on February 14.
There are plans in the works to expand the typically three-day event to a year-round music and arts village.
Mendonca notes that they typically continue to support athletes who perform at the festival year round by giving them opportunities where possible to showcase their talent.