The preliminaries are over and the stage is now set for the Zone Finals of the 2009 Community Dance Fest, formerly known as the Community IndepenDANCE Festival.

Judging for the event commences in the northern zone on Monday, December 14, at the Coleridge and Parry School, St. Peter, while on Tuesday, December 15, it will be the turn of the Southern Zone at the Foundation School, Christ Church.

St. Michael North will be judged on Wednesday, December 16, at the St. Michael School, Martindales Road. On the following day, Thursday, December 17, St. Michael South will host its event at the same venue. ??All shows start at 6:00 p.m.

The winners from the Zone Finals will move on to the National Finals on January 21, 2010, at the Garfield Sobers Complex.

The preliminaries, which ran from November 23 to 26, were designed to select the best performers from each zone and provide the dancers and their management teams with an informal warm-up. In addition, judges offered feedback on their strengths and weaknesses, and gave advice for improvement.

The final preliminary at Parkinson School held last month, for the St. Michael Zone, attracted the largest number of groups – nine. Apart from the young all-female group, Little People Fun and Frolic, the majority of the participants were males. Xtra Hype, last year’s winners, were among those performing. Overall, the dancing was very well received by patrons and organisers.

This year’s festival will be buttressed by a workshop for participating groups, on Sunday, December 6, at the Errol Barrow Centre for Creative Imagination, at the University of the West Indies, Cave Hill Campus.

A spokesperson for the Community Development Department (CDD) noted that admission to the Zone Finals is free and the public, as well as friends and supporters of the participating groups, are encouraged to attend in their numbers.

Persons interested in Community Dance Fest are asked to visit the website of the CDD at for updates. They may also call the offices of the CDD, 310-1700 or 310-1701 for more information.

Community Dance Fest, which is in its fourth year, is coordinated by the Community Development Department in collaboration with the Community Independence Celebrations Secretariat, the National Cultural Foundation and the Commission for Pan-African Affairs.

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