Sunday's Best - 4th Edition of Gala Dynastie

Photo Credit: Akeem Johnson

March 1st marked the 4th edition of Gala Dynastie, an event which honors achievements and efforts from the best and brightest of the Montreal Black Community.This year’s Gala took place at Place Des Arts, a symbol of growth for the event.

The night was more than an award show, it was a celebration of black excellence, something that is often overlooked in this province. From the moment, I stood across from the black carpet and laid eyes on the nominees. I could feel the overall understanding that the gala is about more than handing out awards, it was about celebrating local black culture. The Mayor of Montreal, Valérie Plante, and Bloc Québécois leader, Yves-François Blanchet, were among the attendees.

Whether people choose to bring out their best dress or suit, some decided to wear more traditional garments, everyone brought out their Sunday best. Speaking of Sunday’s best, the comedian Preach, of Aba and Preach, once again played the role of host for the night and did not hesitate to play on the fact that the night was on a Sunday. He tore the house down with his impression of a preacher, yelling out bible clichés and hymns. He continued to be energetic, witty, and insightful throughout the remainder of the show. 

The show started off on a high note, as we were pleasantly surprised by a performance from Corneille, a staple in this city. The Montreal legend sung some of his best hits from back in the day, and threw in some newer cuts in his set.

The night went on smoothly as the winners of each category accepted their awards and each delivered a speech that accentuated the importance of recognition among peers.

For most award winners, this was their first time being recognized for their work by a major award show. This, as they mentioned, was not for their lack of effort, but rather the lack of effort other institutions in Quebec put towards promoting black artists.

Some of the winners were: Djely Tapa for Best World Music, Nicola Ouellet for Best French Radio Personality, and Best Sports Personality went to Chris Boucher who currently plays for the Toronto Raptors.

The night went on to feature a great comedic performance by Dolino, a special tribute to long time promoter Ricky D, and a stand out musical performance from Naya Ali who also took home the award for English music artist of the year.
The Gala proved to be an entertaining evening on all fronts, as  the audience remained enthusiastic  throughout the entire show. Preach ended the night on a more serious tone, explaining that the night is not about segregation but about representation and giving people flowers while they can still smell them.

He went on to say that as important as it is to celebrate the current achievements of Blacks in Montreal, it is more important to set up platforms like Gala Dynastie for the next generation.

Akeem Johnson is the co-host of The Kitchen, a show that blends everything from trap music to afrobeat. It plays every Wednesday at 9:00 p.m EST.