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Dark comedy in Rum and Coca-Cola
Following on last year’s hit production of Smile Orange at the Little Carib Theatre, Scarlett Project is staging Mustapha Matura’s Rum and Coca-Cola. Described by its producers as a “dark calypso musical comedy,” it will feature extempo champ Short Pants (Llewellyn Mac Intosh), and Conrad Parris, in a story told from two points of view. Creator, a calypso veteran who holds to tradition and his protégé Bird, a wide-eyed youngster set on leaving T&T to make a name for himself in the US, discuss cultural identity, calypso and societal change.
In the lead-up to the production, Short Pants and Parris performed calypso hits from the play at two cocktail events—complete with rum-and-Coke drink specials—held at Woodford Café in MovieTowne and Chaguanas. Scarlett Project, launched in 2011 by Daniella Fifi and Paul Pryce, is based in Connecticut, USA, as well as T&T. The company seeks to promote Caribbean theatre. This year’s offering is being produced in collaboration with graduates from the Yale School of Drama (YSD), where Pryce studied theatre.
Director Louisa Proske, from Germany, is a 2012 YSD graduate and has directed both theatre and opera in Europe and the US. Set designer Chien-Yu Peng graduated from YSD in 2011 and has done set design at the Yale Repertory Theatre. In addition to the play, Scarlett Project is co-ordinating a children’s calypso workshop, along with the National Museum and Art Gallery. The workshop will give 12 children from the Tallman Foundation and Rainbow Rescue the chance to learn calypso skills such as melody-making, lyrical composition, studio performance and post-production. They will be tutored by professional musicians and kaiso practitioners in a four-day forum at Highway Records Studios.
Music from the workshop will be featured in the foyer of the theatre throughout the run of the play.
Scarlett Project’s production of Rum and Coca-Cola by Mustapha Matura, directed by Louisa Proske, will be staged at the CLR James Auditorium, Cipriani College of Labour and Co-operative Studies, Valsayn, and will run from August 16-19. The gala opening takes place on August 16 at 7.30 pm; other show times are 8.30 pm Friday and Saturday, and 2 pm and 6.30 pm on Sunday.
Ticket info: 769-5559 or [email protected]
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