South Quarter Finalists for Youth on Stage Perform for Appreciative Audiance at SAPA

Dance group Bro Kode Dance Krew got a rousing applause from the audience as they performed at SAPA, San Fernando

South Trinidad came out to support the Quarter-Finalists of Youth on Stage – South Edition on Sunday 26th May, 2024. Twenty-Seven (27) youth came out to perform in a range of artforms including Song, Dance, Instrumental, Spoken Word and more. This Ministry of Youth Development and National Service initiative attracted hundreds of youth across the country between March and April and narrowed the number down to 62 quarter-finalists.

Patrons to the show commented that they were very impressed by the quality of the (performances) at Sunday’s show. While the competition was stiff, there were a number of memorable acts including Ralva Baptiste, 32 – a contortionist whose uncommon talent made the audience react in disbelief as he showed off his skills.

The Spoken Word Artistes were also on display. Some stand out acts included, was Nakeisha Piper, 21, with her performance piece Rise Up, which she infused with both song and dance. Jabari Collins, 24, who invited the audience Into the Gayelle with a well-written original composition with a strong and bold delivery. Shakira Burton, 22, also delivered a powerful piece on condemning child predators that won her a standing ovation at the end of her performance.

The dancers gave a good challenge to make it to the Semi-Finals. Dance group Bro Kode Dance Krew did a scout-themed Soca dance which included props like a camping tent, bonfire and bamboo. Their efforts were not in vain as they received one of the loudest applauses for the night. The Elements Dance Company and Ultimate Champion All Stars were two all-female outfits who also represented well.

The singers on the night also made strong bids to secure a place in the Youth on Stage Semi Finals. Christopher Gill, 26, put his own spin on Christina Aguilera and A Great Big World’s
Say Something and the audience loved it. Makhaydon Charles, 19, sang John Legend’s Everybody Knows. The ladies also displayed their talent as Lesley Seeparsad, 23 showed great depth and range with an Adele piece. Gianna Griffith, 21 also showcased great vocal strength during her performance.

Pannists of note on the night included Jovan Rambarran, 17 who did a tribute to Michael Jackson and Osiah Bacchus, 13 who gave a scintillating performance of Jahaji Bhai.

There were also a few local artistes who brought their original compositions to a new audience. Daniel Butler, 31 sang his own composition Cinderella and Nicodemus ‘The Soca Genius’ Stewart, 28 sang No Lie. Both won over the crowd with their engagement and lyrics.

Michael Salickram, Judge for the Quarter-Finals for Youth on Stage -South Edition said, “I must applaud the MYDNS for creating such a great opportunity for the youth. Youth on Stage is an excellent idea and it has helped unearth a lot of young talent. The standard of talent was very high, it is difficult to pick just a few from this lot. This really encourages youth – especially in the field of culture – to bring their talent forward. I’m really looking forward to see how this programme will progress.”

The Youth on Stage – National Youth Festival and Talent Search is an avenue for young, aspiring artistes, ages 10 to 35 years, to display and develop their talents. Throughout the talent search process, participants will receive guidance, resources, and industry insights geared toward helping them navigate the challenges of starting a career in the creative and cultural sectors. From March to April, the MYDNS hosted eleven (11) auditions in Arima, Couva, Diego Martin, La Horquetta, Mayaro, Moruga, Point Fortin, Port of Spain and San Fernando. To follow the Youth on Stage journey, persons can visit the Ministry’s social media @mydnstt on Facebook and Instagram or the Ministry’s website at

The Ministry of Youth Development and National Service remains committed to bringing all key stakeholders together to promote youth development and encourage civic-minded citizens to contribute to national service across Trinidad and Tobago.

Jovan Rambarran, 17 during his tribute to Michael Jackson in his bid to move on to the Semi Finals of Youth on Stage
Ralva Baptiste, 32, showed off his flexibility during his performance
Lesley Seeparsad, 23, was a powerhouse of a singer and hopes to move ahead to the Semi Finals of Youth on Stage