Second Belize International Music and Food Festival Faces Mixed Reviews
The second Belize International Music and Food Festival has come and gone. It brought a big hype last week as the international artists arrived in the country, and an excitement and buzz filled the air of Belize City. Unfortunately, there is not much we can tell you in terms of an official count of tickets sold, profits made or an actual post portem from the Belize Tourism Board. We had reached out to the BTB this week for a report, but we were told that a press release would have to suffice. Up to news time tonight, we are still awaiting that release. Having only the court of public opinion to rely on at this time, we can tell you that several local artists were upset, claiming that the BTB was not organized and that there were many delays on the actual first night of the event. The complaints extend even further as local artists took to social media to complain on the way they were regarded in comparison to the foreign performers. But those complaints are only from some of the locals in the music industry. Minister of Culture, Francis Fonseca, says he spoken with several of them who have actually expressed gratitude.
Francis Fonseca, Minister of Education: “Actually I’ve heard quite the opposite from a number of them. A number of them were very grateful for the opportunity provided to them through the Belize International Music and Food Festival. You know with these big international festivals there will always be growing pains, this is the second year so I’m sure the organizers learned something new each year to try to improve. We have a vested interest in ensuring that our local artists are highlighted and promoted at these festivals and I know that’s the same position that BTB has and Minister Anthony Mahler in particular because he and I have discussed it. So there’s a strong commitment on our part to showcase our Belizean artists. But these are international festivals and of course you know we bring in international artists so you know I think most of the artists, the great majority of the local artists appreciate the opportunity, appreciate the chance to learn and see some of these professional artists at work so that’s what I’ve heard from them.”