Over one million dollars in cash and prizes will be up for grabs this Sunday when the ten finalists in the Jamaica Festival Song Competition do battle for the 2009 title.
The final show, which is scheduled for the Ranny Williams Entertainment Centre in Kingston, will see guest artistes Busy Signal, Christopher Martin and 2008 winner Roy Rayon, performing along with this year’s finalists.
The winning song will collect one million dollars courtesy of Digicel, while the Best Performer will cop $300,000 compliments of Tastee. The songwriters of the top ten songs will each be presented with an award of $100,000. Awards for the Most Improved Finalist and for the Most Disciplined Finalist will be determined based on observations from the semi-final round through to Sunday night and the selected finalists will receive a $40,000 gift voucher from Capital and Credit Merchant Bank.
Once again, the public’s opinion carries weight in the selection of the winner, who will be decided through a combination of text votes and scores by a panel of judges. Festival song coordinator Germaine Raymond says based on the objectives of the competition, it is essential that all Jamaica gets involved. “We are seeking to identify a song that will re-energise a spirit of celebration and nationalism in our country; a song for the people selected by the people”. Raymond added, “It is our aim to sustain that spirit way beyond the Independence period so it is important to us that the winning song is widely embraced.”
This year’s competition is being staged under the theme ‘I Believe in Jamaica.’ All the finalists have been involved in a series of workshops and other developmental activities, including an islandwide promotional tour. Major sponsors Chase Fund, along with Tastee Jamaica Ltd, Cooyah and a number of media entities are partnering with the JCDC on the event.