Thu | Jan 18, 2018

Family, friends honour George Carter, OD

Published:Wednesday | April 13, 2016 | 12:00 AM
In this 1964 file photo, A younger looking George Carter (centre) of the Little Theatre Movement escorts the Canadian High Commissioner Graham McInnes and Mrs McInnes to their seats for the opening performance of 'A Midsummer Night's Dream' at Vale Royal.
The Carter family was represented by son Andrew Carter, wife Annia and their two young sons.

Family and friends of George Carter, OD, one of Jamaica's most noted theatre practitioners, recently gathered in his honour at the Little Theatre in Kingston.

Carter was a leading figure in Jamaican theatre, an expert in theatrical lighting, a manager and noted organiser in theatre administration.

His star-studded career started in the 1940s when he began at the Ward Theatre and then on to the Little Theatre.

Lighting by George Carter became a household name, as audiences of the Pantomime and other productions applauded his work. Carter was also a contributor to community development, including the Credit Union Movement, benefiting Jamaica and the wider Caribbean.

Carter had been looking forward to celebrating his 100th birthday here in Jamaica, having been born in April 1916. He was making plans to return home for the event, but sadly, it was not to be. He passed away suddenly in the US, where he had been living with family following his retirement after 21 years as manager of the Little Theatre.

Among those who came out recently to "honour George" were members of the Pantomime Company, the National Dance Theatre Company (of which he was a founding member), Grub Cooper and the Pantomime orchestra, the Jamaican Folk Singers, Father Ho Lung and friends, Ward Theatre Foundation members led by acting chairman Vivian Crawford, the Rev Easton Lee, Marjorie Whylie, soprano Carole Reid and Alma Mock Yen. A message was received from Leonie Forbes. Representatives of other groups and long-time fans also attended in respect for Missa Cee.

A special message was delivered by Trevor Blake of the Jamaica Co-operative Credit Union, recalling Carter's contribution to the movement from its origin.

The final event of the programme was an excerpt from the Pantomime 'Fifty-50', which used black lighting, a technique introduced to local theatre by Carter. It was

re-staged for the occasion by Larry Watson and Michael McDonald of the current LTM team.

The Carter family was represented by son Andrew Carter, wife Annia and their two young sons.

A special commemorative display, including Carter at work, is currently being mounted in the foyer of the Little Theatre in Kingston, where displays of other contributors to theatre history are being shown.