SENTRO KULTURAL KÒRSOU was founded on December 30, 1949, with the objective of promoting cultural life in Curaçao in the broadest sense possible.
In those days people in Holland had a great deal of interest in promoting an exchange of cultural expressions between that country and the Netherlands Antilles, Indonesia and Surinam .
One more reason for this development was to make it possible for people living far away from Holland to enjoy Dutch cultural expression.
Some of the people who had put a lot of effort into the realization of the cultural center were the late Dr. Cola Debrot, who later also became its first president, Mrs. May Henriquez, Mr. J. Bennebroek Gravenhorst and
Dr. L.A.G.O. Lashley, a well-known ophthalmologist on the island.
Subsequently the center had amongst others Messrs. Rudolph Quast, J.W. Bennebroek Gravenhorst, Frank Jas, L.A.G.O. Lashley, J. Abraham, E.S. Pieters Kwiers, R.A. Hodgson, C.J. Penso, R.T. de Palm, mrs. Beatriz Doran-Scoop and Elvio Cijntje as president.
At the present time Mr. Henri Cornelia occupies this position.
At the beginning CCC had close ties to the academic library (”wetenschappelijke bibliotheek”), where its offices were also located. The principal activity of CCC was the organization of cultural events, such as concerts and stage plays brought here from Holland as well as plays that were produced locally. Here we can mention two popular plays: ”Marie di Malpais” and “Juancho Picaflor”.
After this initial period CCC also experienced a time when actors/directors of theater plays came here from abroad for some time to direct plays like ”Ilushon di Anochi”, ”Laiza Porko Sushi” and ”E Pober Yaya”. In the 50s and 60s CCC was taking film to the people living in the ”barios” (residential areas) with the help of a ”sine truck” (a special vehicle that was used to show the films). This also made it possible for people here to keep up with news from Holland, since the ”Polygoon Filmjournaal”, a Dutch news presentation, was routinely shown before the feature film.
During its existence CCC deployed activities in all areas of culture and held many art exhibitions showing paintings, sculpture, handicraft and photographs.
CCC promoted theatre with the help of its own productions and also by sponsoring emerging groups, such as ”Arte Proba” with its director Anthony Jamanika.
In the area of literature CCC organized literary sessions, sponsored books and also subsidized writers in their travels abroad.
CCC was also active in the area of dancing and started giving ballet classes in its center in Skalo. For the past few years CCC has also been offering classes of basic folkloric dance for the general public and also for dance instructors. These classes are all under the expert direction of the well-known Cesareo Jean Louis.
At the request of the island territory of Curaçao , in the year 1972, CCC took over management of the Music School . In 1999 the name of the School was changed into ”Akademia di Músika Edgar Palm” in honor of one of our most prominent musicians, composer and teacher of piano and ”ka'i òrgel” at the Academy up to the time he passed away.
The Academy offers classes in piano, guitar, keyboard, kuarta and mandolin, recorder ('blokfluit'), trumpet, saxophone, drum, percussion, song and AMV (Algemeen Muziek Vormend onderwijs) = general music education.
Currently the Academy has around 600 students. Its actual director is
Mrs. Carolina Nicolaas.
Various students of our Academy went on to study music at the conservatory in Holland or in the United States. Some of them returned to the island as music instructors at our Academy, amongst them Ronchi Mathews, David Isenia and Antoin Ravelo.
Some of our former students, like RANDAL CORSEN, TANIA CROSS AND ERIC CALMES are making a name for themselves on the international scene.
In the past CCC was able to cover its expenses partially with the subsidy received from Holland and from funds generated through its own activities. The subsidy from Holland was granted via STICUSA (Stichting Culturele Samenwerking). This was a foundation that had been established by the Dutch, especially to stimulate the exchange of culture between Holland and the Netherlands Antilles and Surinam . After Surinam became independent the foundation stopped its activities. OKSNA (Orgaan Kulturele Samenwerking Ned. Antillen) then took its place. This organization fell under the Central Government and channeled all subsidies coming from Holland to the Antilles for the funding of cultural projects. In 1998 CCC was completely renovated with money received from KABNA and Sede Antia, for a total cost of 1,2 million Neth. Antillean guilders.
In 1999 Dutch authorities made the decision to stop all subsidies for cultural projects in the Antilles . The consequences of this decision were devastating for CCC. Thanks to help received from the Foundation BON INTENSHON and later from REDA SOSIAL, CCC could keep its doors open, be it on a limited scale.
In the year 2003 CCC managed to sign a so-called ”zorgcontract” with the island government of Curaçao so that continuity of the operation of CCC and its activities could be continued. This also signaled the start of a new period in which CCC could also take up other activities apart from the Music Academy , such as dance lessons, classes in Papiamentu, melody and lyrics, storytelling, painting and free expression.
As part of its efforts to continue promoting our culture, CCC has prepared a big project "ka'i òrgel ta bai skol". This project contains a cd and interactive dvd, supplying information concerning history and development of the "ka'i òrgel" (music box).