American embassy hosts Independence Day reception
BANDAR SERI BEGAWAN
THE United States Embassy in Brunei last night celebrated the 240th American Independence Day with a reception held at The Empire Hotel & Country Club’s Indera Samudra Grand Hall.
Invited guests comprising members of the diplomatic community, government officials and other guests were dressed in their finest in commemorating the remarkable history of America.
In attendance as the guest of honour was Minister of Culture, Youth and Sports Yang Berhormat Pehin Datu Lailaraja Major General (Rtd) Dato Paduka Seri Hj Awg Halbi Hj Mohd Yusof and his spouse Datin Hjh Kalshom Hj Suhaili.
With the theme ‘Celebrating America: The Birthplace of Jazz’, US Ambassador to Brunei Craig Allen in his speech highlighted how the ancient art form of jazz signifies America as a diverse, innovative country.
“Jazz, its history, and the cultures associated with it perfectly demonstrate a number of traits that we, as Americans hold dear; diversity, innovation, collaboration and fun.
“Our jazz entertainment tonight is a manifestation of the fact that we believe by experiencing some jazz here, you’re experiencing a piece of America — an America that like jazz, is open, creative, embracing, expanding, exhilarating, diverse and free,” he said.
Allen also expressed his confidence that the friendship between the US and Brunei which marked its 171 anniversary this year, will continue to strengthen, citing that the US is committed in ratifying and implementing the Trans Pacific Partnership agreement with Brunei and its 10 other partners very soon.
“When this is complete, we will effectively have a free trade area among the member countries — drawing our economies and our peoples ever closer together.”
The celebration yesterday evening was enlivened with jazz performances by Brunei’s iFever band and the Jerudong International School Jazz Band. The ceremony also saw a cake-cutting ceremony taking place, prior to Allen presenting the guest of honour with a framed vinyl jazz album titled ‘A Love Supreme’ by John Coltrane.
The Brunei Times