Grange tribute to Barbara Gloudon

Kingston, 12 May 2022 - The Minister of Culture, Gender, Entertainment and Sport, the Honourable Olivia Grange, has paid tribute to veteran Journalist, playwright and author Barbara who has died at the age of 87.

Minister’s Statement

“Barbara Gloudon was in a special class, distinguished by the varied contributions she made to national life. A woman of many talents.

She was a journalist of renown who broke the glass ceiling when she became the first woman to be appointed the Editor of the Gleaner and the Star publications.

She had started her career in journalism in 1953 as a reporter at the Gleaner Company and along the way gained fame as the writer of a popular column, ‘Stellah Seh’, in the Star newspaper. I was inspired by ‘Stellah Seh’ and rarely missed the column.

She was host of the radio talk-show, Hotline, from the late 1980s until 2015.

Barbara was a critically acclaimed playwright with the Little Theatre Movement. She was invited to write a script for the National Pantomime and her first work was Moonshine Anancy, which featured Louise Bennett, Ranny Williams and Eric Coverley. Moonshine Anancy marked a transition to a more indigenous form of theatre, where Jamaicans could relate to Jamaican characters and local themes. She followed up with no less than 30 Pantomime scripts.

Jamaican Theatre was transformed through her work.

She served on the Council of the Institute of Jamaica — an agency of the Ministry of Culture, Gender, Entertainment and Sport — for many years and was later honoured by that body which named her a Fellow of the Institute of Jamaica in 2012.

A giant has passed. Barbara Gloudon was awesome; a truly phenomenal Jamaican woman. Her passing will leave a vacuum but her body of work will serve to guide generations yet unborn.

I offer my sincere condolences to her family, particularly to her children, Lisa, Anya and Jason.

May God’s light shine perpetually upon her.”

END

Minister's charge

I remain hopeful because of the giftedness of the Jamaican people; their warmth and creativity; their dynamism and indomitable spirit that have resulted in excellence in all sectors.

It is by tapping into the gifts and awakening the spirit of the Jamaican people that we will, by God’s grace, re-group, re-engineer and re-open to a brighter future with Culture, Gender, Entertainment and Sport.

Olivia Grange

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