We plan to do three events a year in Kingston. The idea is to carry out a game changer development in Jamaica by creating the most important entertainment center in the Caribbean. In advance, we are looking at a 20-acre property and hope to get answers about that project soon. If we are successful, this project will be huge and take up a significant amount of my time. . Overall, Jamaica is an interesting place; it is still a developing country but is one of the most powerful in the Caribbean. The country is unusual because it has been blessed with reggae, Bob Marley, Peter Tosh, and Studio One, and now we have Usain Bolt and other track stars. Jamaica is competing and winning, though the infrastructure here is not as great as it could be. With excellent technology and social media, one can truly compete with the biggest people in the business world, especially if the talent pool is there. There is a great deal of opportunity for growth with such smart, competitive people.
Apr. 27, 2019
Capitalizing on the country's remarkable talent pool, cultural vibrancy, extraordinary love of life, hospitable attitude, and strong and prosperous diaspora, it is no surprise the island has become a Mecca for festivals of every kind in recent years.
Josef J. Bogdanovich
Chairman & CEO, Downsound Records
Founder & Managing Director, SSCO Event Management
I have been in the business more than 10 years and started at SSCO primarily to manage the execution of Restaurant Week. 2018 marks our 14th year. I was a teacher by profession, and my life changed 14 years ago when I sought to reinvent myself. The growth of Restaurant Week throughout the island has been the highlight of my success. As for our clients, they are wide ranging. We have corporate clients like banks and investment firms, as well as individuals. However, Restaurant Week has taken a great deal of our time and takes about six months to plan and execute. Though it began only in Kingston, it has now spread to seven other cities. We also offer full-scale wedding planning, both locally and abroad, in addition to planning and executing corporate launches and customer appreciation parties, as well as manage conference and events. Just a few examples are the visits of Princess Ann and the Youth Orchestra of The Americas to Jamaica.
Filmmaker & Co-Founder, Calabash International Literary Festival
I directed and produced two feature-length documentaries: “One People—The Celebration” for the 50th anniversary of Jamaica's independence in 2012; and “Jamaica Arise,” a film about the 75-year history of the People's National Party. I am fascinated by Jamaica's history, and this is reflected in my personal work. It is extremely important to examine one's history and why things are the way they are, in addition to highlighting little known facts. For example, Jamaica was only the third country in the world to achieve universal adult suffrage, after England and New Zealand. I also work with overseas companies on commercials, documentaries, and feature films while on island. Our recent documentary, Walking Cities, is an initiative of the British Council, which approached me to produce a documentary with Akala, a British rapper, historian, and activist of Jamaican heritage, and Marlon James, Jamaica's Man Booker Prize-winning novelist, to talk about the historic significance of Kingston.
Managing Director, Dream Entertainment Ltd
Dream Entertainment specializes in the conceptualization, planning, marketing and production of large music festivals and events. Our biggest event is 'Dream Weekend,' a five-day festival in Negril, the westernmost point of Jamaica. We have 30,000-40,000 partygoers in attendance, more than half of which are international and travel specifically for the event. In 2017, we launched a second major festival, this time in Kingston, called Xodus Carnival. In just two years, this has become the largest carnival in Jamaica, attracting 3,000 attendees in costume. In 2019, we expect to have at least 4,000 of these revelers. Our big upcoming project is the Dream Weekend Cruise, a huge six-day, five-night non-stop party à-la-Dream Weekend on a chartered Royal Caribbean cruise ship with 1,600 cabins and a 3,900-person capacity. Our marketing focus centers primarily on the Caribbean diaspora markets in Florida, New York, Toronto, Atlanta, and London. Most of our visitors come to know of us through word-of-mouth and our strong social media presence.