New rules for Carnival
All systems are go for Carnival 2011, according to Arts & Multiculturalism Minister Winston Peters (Gypsy).
Speaking off the record at a reception for cultural personalities last week Friday at Knowsley Building in Port-of-Spain, the minister said a new National Carnival Commission (NCC) Board was to be installed soon. The man shortlisted to be the new chairman is Kenny De Silva, a former chairman of the Commission. Up to last Wednesday afternoon, however, De Silva said he had received no instrument of appointment. The composition of the new board augurs well for C2K11 especially as other names mentioned include experienced veterans in Carnival, including Don Sylvester and Cyril Collier, in addition to the heads of Carnival’s Special Interest groups (SIGs), including Keith Diaz (Pan Trinbago); Lutalo Masimba (Bro Resistance), (Tuco); and Wrenrick Brown (NCBA).
Peters also said the Parade of the Bands competition would be returning inside the Queen’s Park Savannah, its traditional home, instead of proceeding along the outside southern perimeter of the venue. He added that a main stage would be returned, with north and grand viewing stands. Himself being the National Calypso Monarch of 1997, and a multiple champion in extempore competition, Peters said there was every likelihood that next year calypsonians would be required to sing two selections for the national monarch competition, a move welcomed by many of the veteran calypsonians.
Contacted on Wednesday, Tuco president Lutalo Masimba (Bro Resistance), with a chuckle in his voice, said: “As far as I am concerned this decision can only be taken by the membership of Tuco and the jury’s still out on that. We are discussing it, though.” Concurring with Resistance was former national monarch Michael Osuna (Sugar Aloes), who said: “While I consider this is a progressive move, it is not a decision for any minister to make. Only Tuco can make this decision. But, I am for the two songs as it will separate the men from the boys in the competition.”
Before C2K11 comes around, however, Peters has given his endorsement to this evening’s Extemporama being held at SWWTU Hall, on Wrightson Road, Port-of-Spain, from 8 pm. A virtual clash between the best exponents of extempore, representing the three zones of Tuco, Peters affirmed the event was not a competition, but a chance for “bragging rights in the genre.” Tonight’s zonal war is billed as “De Councillor vs De Minister” as many people expect it to come down to a face-off between the arts minister and COP Councillor Phillip Murray (Black Sage). Widely regarded to be the world’s best extempore artistes, Peters said he didn’t intend taking any prisoners tonight as he knew each contestant would be gunning for him.
In mirth, he said: “It will be fire in town on Friday night, and I intend getting them before they get me.” Also in the fray tonight are Contender, Fire Ball, Gary Ranks, Black Sage (North); Lingo, Lady Africa, Sheldon John, Dion Diaz (East); Brian London, Abebele, Short Pants, Gypsy (South). Peters was complimentary of the young people venturing into the realm of extempore, singling out Fire Ball and Bunji Garlin, adding that they brought their own unique but entertaining treatment to the art form. Hosted by Mervyn Telfer and Shirlaine Hendrickson, this evening’s show also features former calypso monarch Relator, with musical accompaniment by Moods.
Tunes for Panorama 2011
As far as pan and the 2011 National Panorama Competition are concerned, calypsonians have already completed their “pan songs,” including De Original De Fosto Himself, Crazy and Eunice Peters.
Four hot tracks for Panorama 2011 are:
• In She Rainorama sung by De Fosto—composed by Winston Scarborough;
• Desperadoes Coming Down sung by De Fosto—composed by Winston Scarborough;
• A Raging Storm sung by DeFosto—composed by Winston Scarborough;
• Percy on Me sung by Crazy—composed by Edwin Ayoung & Winsford Devine.
The calypso tents are also gearing up for a bumper C2K11 season.
Speaking with Pulse on Wednesday, Calypso Revue producer Sugar Aloes said all systems were go for the season. He said auditions would commence on November 14 and continue every Sunday, at 11 am, at a venue to be announced. The regional tents operated by Tuco are also in their final planning stages, as well as the Icons tent operated by another former national and Independence monarch, Weston Rawlins (Cro Cro).