by Howard Campbell
[KINGSTON, Jamaica] – Jamaica’s theater community, still reeling from the loss of director/producer Trevor Nairne, has lost another giant in playwright Barbara Gloudon.
The 87 year-old stalwart, who was ill for some time, died here on May 11, two weeks after the death of Ancile, her husband of 62 years.
Nairne died on May 6 at age 73.
Gloudon was synonymous with pantomime, the annual stage production that has been part of Jamaica’s cultural scene since the 1940s.
She wrote most of the pantomimes over the past 53 years, starting with Moonshine Anancy in 1969. It was a spoof of the historic Moon Landing by American astronauts in 1969.
While she was associated with theater and the arts, Gloudon first made her name as a journalist. She worked at the Daily Gleaner newspaper for many years, as a reporter and columnist.
In the 1980s, Gloudon began hosting Hot Line, a talk show covering political and social issues on Radio Jamaica.
Barbara Gloudon was from a family with roots in sports and music. Her younger brother, Bunny Goodison, played for Jamaica and was one of country’s respected musicologists.
She was awarded the Order of Jamaica, Jamaica’s fifth highest honor, in 1992.