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Musical Life in GuyanaHistory and Politics of Controlling Creativity$
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Vibert C. "Cambridge

Print publication date: 2015

Print ISBN-13: 9781628460117

Published to University Press of Mississippi: September 2016

DOI: 10.14325/mississippi/9781628460117.001.0001

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Public Spectacles: 1931–1940

Public Spectacles: 1931–1940

(p.63) 4 Public Spectacles: 1931–1940
Musical Life in Guyana

Vibert C. Cambridge

University Press of Mississippi

This chapter demonstrates how the period between 1931 and 1940 was pervaded with a number of state-funded public entertainments that were organized to celebrate key events in the colony's history, or in British imperial life. The celebrations to mark the Golden and Diamond Jubilees of Queen Victoria established the format for imperial public entertainments in the British Empire, including British Guiana. Special events during this decade included the British Guiana Centenary celebrations (1931), the Centenary of the Abolition of Slavery (1934), Georgetown's Centenary (1937), the Coronation of George VI (1937), and the Centenary of East Indian Immigration to British Guiana (1938). The music associated with these events identified the musical aesthetics of the ruling class, provided a snapshot of what was popular, demonstrated the musical proficiency of Guyanese musicians, and offered an opportunity to appreciate the thrust of contemporary Guyanese creativity.

Keywords:   public entertainment, British imperial life, British Guiana, abolition of slavery, Georgetown, East Indian immigration, British Guiana, Guyanese musicians

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