A warm welcome and return fit for a king awaits the Mighty Sparrow when he touches down at Piarco International Airport shortly after midday tomorrow.It will be the first visit home for the world's most acclaimed calypsonian since falling seriously ill in New York last September.The acknowledged Calypso King of the World arrives home as the first-class guest of Caribbean Airlines which agreed to host him on the request of Canboulay Productions.
Canboulay is bringing the legendary performer home for a tribute-benefit series of five lecture performances titled If Sparrow Say So... One of the five will be held in Tobago.Canboulay director Rawle Gibbons said the series was Canboulay's way of "expressing a grateful nation's love and thanks to the Mighty Sparrow for all the years of joy and insight that he has given us."As official media partner of the series, Guardian Media Ltd will broadcast exclusive live coverage on VIBE CT of the Mighty Sparrow's arrival at 12.40 pm.
The station will also carry exclusive live broadcast of lectures and performances. The T&T Guardian will celebrate the return of the King with the Wednesday publication of a Sparrow Tribute Magazine–which promises to be a collector's item.The series opens at the Central Bank Auditorium on Wednesday at 7 pm with a presentation titled My Whole Life Is Calypso by Prof Gordon Rohlehr, backed by Canboulay performers.
Two of the other four presentations follow on February 17. They are: Leaving Royal Jail by Earl Lovelace, which takes place at 10 am at the Rudranath Capildeo Learning Resource Centre in Couva; and Sparrow Offstage by Prof Hollis Liverpool at the Works Conference Room in Shaw Park, Tobago, at 7 pm.Calypsonian David Rudder takes the stage with The University of Sparrow on Wednesday, February 19 at 7 pm at Naparima Bowl in San Fernando.
The series closes off with Who Taking Advantage of Who, a two-woman presentation by Prof Pat Mohammed and calypsonian Singing Sandra on February 26 at 7 pm at Daaga Auditorium at UWI.All presentations will be backed by Canboulay performers under the direction of Louis McWilliams. Canboulay performers include David Bereaux, Phillip Murray, Marva Newton, Alisford Phillips and Leslie Clement.
Tickets are available from tomorrow at Nu Mas Camp in Port-of-Spain, Department of Creative and Festival Arts, UWI, and at Naparima Bowl. Students in school uniform can attend free at the LRC in Couva.The Tobago leg is being sponsored by the Tobago House Of Assembly. Entry there is also at no cost.Season tickets for the full five lectures are priced at a special rate of $300 until Wednesday.