The quote above, was from the last performance I witness by a local multidisciplinary artist called Alydia Wever. It has stuck with me, ever since she made all of us in that dark sweaty room say it out loud. This had that me thinking about how, maybe we should talk about our own local artists, about what they are bringing to the table and what conversations they are pushing forward. Why aren’t we breaking down and discussing performances and lyrics from people who very directly impact our island as oppose to run never ending circles around the Amerikkkan mainstream pop scene. Aruba should have art critics. We should be able to talk openly about our island sensations, without being labeled haters. We should care about our local artist, but, where are the articles? why is no one writing? and I am not talking personal interviews here, we get plenty of those in magazines. We need to talk about how the people we give the spotlight and the glory to, are using their platform and what is it that they improve.
Though nowadays, editors are too concerned chasing political cheese. They want the scoop, the first to have it as long as it is going to create drama and tension. God forbid, an article is ever written with the sole purpose of changing a perspective. Instead we get a whole bunch of yellow journalism.
While we could very easily copy paste another senseless article one parliamentarian with too much time on their hands wrote in the opinion page. We could leave that for another day, and do what journalist are truly supposed to do: research, select and write.
So let me claim the title, and tell you that I’ve done my research. I have been the present journalist and I want to highlight three people: Alydia Wever, Luis Villegas and Natusha Croes. Not only because I (personally) have never seen a bad performance from them but more so because they live so authentically true to themselves. Also, these are the last three I saw perform and it’s all so fresh in my mind. They are important to the culture, for the simple fact that what they bring forward is what very few of these artist do and that’s pure honesty. Plenty of times, for the lack of either funds or support I have seen them build stages from scratch and still deliver magic.
They are here for the quality of their work and not the quantity of praise they for sure receive after. While they are different in craft: Wever doing multidisciplinary arts, like dancing, spoken word, storytelling and acting all in one. Both Croes and Villegas seem to have the time of their lives experimenting with unconventional sounds. There’s always a catch though, and their message is consistently this : It is okay to be weird, it is okay to be different, but most of all it is okay to be vulnerable and it is okay to not make much sense. Which on an island, that has basically normalized bullying culture is a huge deal. So stop being glued to your computer checking out what Wiz and Kanye are fighting about and go find out where our locals are performing. Rihanna doesn’t need your money anymore, she has made it, in a few days you will be able to stream that ANTI for free. But our locals could use your presence and your support. Art, as uncomfortable as it may make us sometimes is really important. Artist are important, take time to go support them and analyze their crafts because very often that’s where most of the truth lays.