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Dining with The Saints

Thursday, July 3, 2014
Wendell Manwarren of 3Canal turns on diners in St Mary’s Centenary Hall.

There was no sign of dissension last Saturday night when politicians on both sides of the divide participated in the 14th edition of Dining with the Saints, held at St Mary’s College, Port-of-Spain. A record 103 chefs participated in the event, held on the college’s spacious courtyard and hosted by the Past Students’ Union. 


Among the politicians offering dishes were Finance Minister Larry Howai; National Security Minister Garry Griffith; Opposition parliamentarians Colm Imbert and Terrence Deyalsingh; and, acting Senator Stuart Young; former Chaguanas mayor Winston Siriram and former MP Augustus Ramrekersingh. Some of the politicians, although listed as “chefs,” were unavoidably absent, including Tourism Minister Gerry Hadeed whose dish was served by the women of St Joseph’s Convent, Port-of-Spain, and Mariano Browne, represented by his son. Also seen in their chef attire and serving dishes were Justice Malcolm Holdip and attorney Gregory Delzin. 


One of the evening’s highlights was the entertainment cast including Blaxx of Roy Cape All Stars, 3Canal and Carib Woodbrook Playboyz. As well, students of St Mary’s and St Joseph’s gave patrons a sneak peek of their July 12 Prefect Body hosts No Man’s Land—A Contagious Event fashion show. With Blaxx putting diners in the mood with his repertoire of R&R standards, 3canal followed with an energetic performance which had many on their feet in the packed Centenary Hall, including a few nuns. 


The fierce Intercol rivalry between St Mary’s and QRC which dates back over a century was also put aside as the student body invited “chefs” from the St Clair college, along with alumni from Fatima College, St Joseph’s Convent and Belmont Secondary. 


Most of the presenters came up with some original, topical and hilarious names for their dishes. For instance, Dempsey Pujadas of Fatima named his dish Shrimply Put—Something Fishy in the PP and Gregory Aboud’s was No where to Pork in Port-of-Spain. There were also Something Fishy in Room 201 by Martin De Gannes; Spork from Room 201 by Kyle Delzin; D “Big Fish” Got Caught by Fatima’s Dwight Andrews; Griffith’s Gary’s Crime-Busting Pepper Ribs; and, Imbert’s Apolitical Shrimp Delight. 


The next big event by the Past Students’ Union is Pan With the Saints 2014 on Sunday, September 28, featuring some of the top steel orchestras, most of which were either founded by or led by CIC alumni. The first edition of Pan With the Saints was held last year as part of the programme of events to mark the 150th anniversary of the founding of St Mary’s College. 



Woodbrook celebrates pan 



The Woodbrook/St James Community Association will stage the 2014 instalment of Pan on D’Avenue on Saturday, August 23, along Ariapita Avenue between Taylor and French Streets, Woodbrook, between 6.30 pm to midnight. Former Woodbrook councillor Cleveland Garcia told Pulse this week: “This is the third time we are having this celebration but this year is very significant in that we are commemorating the 100th anniversary of the city of Port-of-Spain, as well as the 52nd (Independence) anniversary of T&T, and in recognition of our national instrument, the steelpan.” 


To commemorate the valuable contribution of pan to the nation the association will honour 12 top steelband arrangers with awards. President Anthony Carmona has been invited to make the presentations at a cultural production scheduled for Adam Smith Square.


The arrangers to be honoured include Dr Jit Samaroo, Leon “Smooth” Edwards, Len “Boogsie” Sharpe, Earl Rodney, Robert Greenidge, Pelham Goddard, Duvonne Stewart, Terrance “BJ” Marcelle, Ken “Professor” Philmore, Ray Holman, Earl Brooks and Lennox Bobby Mohammed. 


The parade will also include traditional Carnival masqueraders. Some of the popular Zumba groups have been invited to do fitness routines along the route, to highlight the importance of keeping fit and living healthy. 


Steelbands invited to the parade include Petrotrin Phase II Pan Groove, Massy Trinidad All Stars, bp Renegades, CAL Invaders, Witco Desperadoes, PCS Silver Stars, White Oak Starlift, Republic Bank Exodus, Skiffle, Courts Sound Specialists of Laventille, NLCB Fonclaire, Pan Elders, Couva Joylanders, Supa Novas, Arima Golden Symphony, Carib Woodbrook Playboyz, Tamana Pioneers, St James Tripolians, Brimblers, Harvard Harps and San Juan East Side.



Excellent BET awards


Last weekend was one of very little rest, consumed with the second round of the World Cup football tournament, myriad entertainment events, culminating on Sunday night with the 14th staging of the BET Awards. Hosted by comedian/actor Chris Rock, the four-hour programme was extremely entertaining, honouring the standouts in black American music, inclusive of R&B, hip hop, rap and gospel.


Standout performance for me came from gospel diva Yolanda Adams rendering Jesus is Love during the Lifetime Award tribute to Lionel Richie. The Richie tribute was a memorable one, and included a monologue by Pharrell Williams, vocalist of current smash hit single Happy and winner of two awards on the night. Apart from Adams, also singing Richie classics were John Legend and Ledisi. I was also impressed by the performances of Usher, Chris Brown and August Alsina.





BET Awards 2014 – Awardees


Best Male R&B/Pop Artist: Pharrell Williams


Best Female R&B/Pop Artist: Beyonce


Best Collaboration: Beyonce and Jay Z


Best Female Hip Hop Artist: Nicki Minaj


Video Director Of The Year: Hype Williams


Best Gospel Artist: Tamela Mann


Best Actress: Lupita Nyong’o


Young Stars Award: Keke Palmer


Best International Act Africa: Davido


Best Group: Young Money


Best Male Hip Hop Artist: Drake


Video Of The Year: Pharrell Williams


Best New Artist: August Alsina


Best Actor: Chiwetel Ejiofor


Best Movie: 12 Years A Slave


Best International Act UK: Krept And Konan


Viewers Choice Award: August Alsina


Centric Sportsman Of The Year: Kevin Durant


Centric Sportswoman Of The Year: Serena Williams


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