It was the shortest mas band presentation I’ve ever attended, but it was one of the most impressive. Last Saturday’s preview of the C2K13 band Lifting of the 7 Veils, presented by Generations Carnival, was held at Little Carib Theatre in Woodbrook and was attended by an appreciative audience of specially invited people.
Led by designer/actor Aaron Schneider, Lifting of the 7 Veils is fundamentally a mirror on mankind’s “seven deadly sins, to be presented in sections named Lust, Greed, Envy, Gluttony, Wrath, Vanity and Sloth.
Generations Carnival falls under the relatively new genre of mas called “boutique mas.” It’s a concept inspired by mas of old, from the era of Bailey, Hart, Saldenah and Lee Heung, when the emphasis was on costumery and masquerade. This latest manifestation is also heavily influenced by avant-garde fashion trends.
Though not relatively known to the wider community, Schneider is a veteran artist—designing for over 15 years for the theatre stage, corporate entities, special events and Carnival.
In the past he has designed mas at home and abroad for bands like Wayne Berkeley’s Masquerade, Trini Revellers, Spice and Caribana’s Louis Saldenah in Toronto, Canada. This designer is determined to revive the use of local materials in mas-making, which he augments with “made in China” accessories.
Generations Carnival has as its executive producer Veltronics Limited, authorised dealer for Bose products locally. Come Carnival 2013, the band intends hitting the streets as an all-inclusive entity. On Saturday night guests were treated to five of its seven sections, with the absence of Gluttony and Lust. So enthralling is the mas that many in the venue were overheard exuding “oohs” and “aahs” as every costume was presented.
Some guests were also open in commending Schneider for designing total costumes for male masqueraders, and giving females the option of playing mas in either skimpy costumes or beautifully covered.
Registration for Lifting of the 7 Veils is scheduled for October 23.
Two other bands had launchings last weekend. Ricky Davidson’s Wee International launched Magnifique on the rooftop of Synergy TV, on Ariapita Avenue, Woodbrook, and Junabo Productions launched its C2K13 J’Ouvert band in Lange Park, Chaguanas. A relatively new band, Wee International is one of the bands that represents the future of mas, produced by young people, and which has already made an impact on the mas scene. Its costumes are simple in design and functional for the young masquerader who simply wants to “free up” for Carnival.
“Jungle J’Ouvert Jam” was the title of Junabo’s launch, held at the recreation park on Paria Avenue, in Lange Park. Into Carnival much longer than Wee International, 19 years to be exact, the launch was well attended and one of its highlights was the appearance of sections from Paparazzi Carnival’s presentation of Red Carpet. One of Paparazzi’s costumes (French Connection) was given away as a door prize. Junabo’s next major production is its annual parang festival in Chaguanas. The band also continues its weekly Friday evening after work limes at its band house on Murray Street, Woodbrook.
Revue turns 50
The Revue Calypso Tent will be celebrating its 50th calypso season during Carnival 2013. As a result, the management of the tent has embarked on a series of fundraising events in an attempt to acquire the necessary funds in order to purchase either a building or land to develop an entertainment centre from which it is intended to host its activities from Carnival 2014.
Management’s major fundraising activity for the celebratory year is the scheduled awards, dinner and dance, scheduled for October 26, at the ballroom of the Hyatt Regency hotel in Port-of-Spain, from 8 pm to 2 am. Tickets for this event costs $600 per person, and a table for ten people costs $5,000.
Other activities have been scheduled for the year, up to Carnival 2014, and include:
• A church service on October 21, from 11 am, at the Holy Trinity Cathedral, Port-of-Spain
• The launch of a commemorative magazine highlighting the personnel and achievements of the Revue over the past 50 years
• The award of a 40-inch, flat screen television to a lucky patron on opening night at the Revue in Arima
• The award of a special gift to a lucky patron at the opening night of the Revue at Palms Club, San Fernando
• A retro soca Caribbean night show on February 6, 2013, featuring Swallow, Gabby, Ajamu, Short Shirt, Becket, Winston Soso and Red Plastic Bag against members of the Revue
• A raffle to be drawn on February 9, 2013, at SWWTU Hall, Wrightson Road, Port-of-Spain, where a lucky patron will win a Honda Fit automobile.