T&T has a major problem with homelessness and all it takes is a casual walk through the streets of Port-of-Spain to see the extent of the problem.
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Sport, party, mas, pan in the mix
Well, it’s all over, dusted and put away for the next four years, and life should return to normal, for most? The 2014 World Cup which ended last Sunday at Brazil’s Maracana Stadium, with a victory to Germany, has been hailed by critics and football fans alike as “the best ever.”
With football holding the spotlight internationally these past six weeks, sporting attention ought to turn regionally as the Limacol CPL tournament progresses. Competition began last week in Grenada with Red Steel winning its first game, and due to play Antigua Hawksbills in Antigua on Sunday. Competition moves to the Queen’s Park Oval, Port-of-Spain, on July 24 when Red Steel led by Dwayne Bravo, comes up against Guyana Amazon Warriors. In what promises to be a hectic weekend, Red Steel plays Jamaica Tallawahs on July 26, and St Lucia Zouks on July 27. The CPL is being marketed as “the biggest cricket party in the Caribbean” and the Oval games are expected to be spiced with many live performances.
Sports may top the entertainment list but there’s also a lot taking place in the arts. The big theatre event is tonight’s reprise of Richard Ragoobarsingh’s Scandal at the National Academy for the Performing Arts (Napa), Port-of-Spain. Scandal features an acclaimed cast including Richard Ragoobarsingh, Leslie Ann Lavine, Cecilia Salazar, Aaron Schneider, Ria Ali and Sheldon Augustine. It is directed by Ragoobarsingh and Debra Boucaud Mason.
Pan is also in the mix as this evening the Pan Trinbago Northern Region hosted the annual 1 2 3 Plus Concert at the Petrotrin Phase II Pan Theatre, Hamilton Street, Woodbrook. Steelbands on the billing include Witco Desperadoes, bpTT Renegades and Phase II.
There is much going on in the party whirl. Tomorrow sees the return of “the Don of DJs” Rennie Bishop. He has star billing at Generation of Soul, being held by Sounds of Kabuki and Prerogative, at Prisons’ Sports Complex, Arouca from 9 pm. Bishop will be joined by some top “retro” disc jockeys, including John Gill, Chris Boynes, Kabuki, Howie T, Brian Regis, Sensational Sammy, Signal 2 Noise and Dr Ross.
Another super party tomorrow night is Lady In Red, by Victoria’s and the Good Men Crew at De Nu Pub (The Mas Camp) in Woodbrook. This is its 16th year and music will be DJs Sensational Sammy and Special Delivery. Known as “The Electrifying Party,” women are requested to make a special effort to wear red in keeping with the event’s theme. Gents are asked to dress “elegantly casual” with a touch of red if possible.
Carnival 2015 sees a dual band launch at the Queen’s Park Savannah, Port-of-Spain, tomorrow night. Tribe will unveil Wings of Desire, and Bliss will launch Blue.
The eagerly-awaited launch of Ronnie & Caro’s presentation–Ah Come Back Home–takes place on July 24 with its traditional street parade from 4 pm, from the Memorial Park, down Frederick Street to City Hall on Knox Street.
Ronnie & Caro continues its launch on July 27 with a band cooler boat cruise aboard Point Lomas Tours vessel, at noon. Music will be by DJs Jahmoun & Dangerous Robin, Ezel & John Boy, Element & Fro and Kevin.
When the Ah Come Back Home mas camp opens at cor Ana and Warren Streets, Woodbrook, Tobago Day will be held on July 26, from noon. Tobago cuisine will be on sale, inclusive of crab and dumpling, rabbit, conch, stew pork, curried fish in coconut sauce and blue food (provision).
Nelson Mandela International Day is being observed internationally today and Mandela’s memory will be celebrated on Sunday when 67 Minutes of Service is held at the Pool Deck of One Woodbrook Place, at 6 pm. By request dress is black and white and guests, instead of performing 67 minutes of service, are requested to make a minimum donation of $67 which is to be donated to charity. People are also invited to devote 67 minutes of their time–one minute for every year of Mandela’s public service–to community service as a small gesture of solidarity with humanity.
From soca to R&B
Having heard soca star Blaxx (Dexter Stewart) of Roy Cape All Stars master R&B material, I was equally impressed recently to hear 2013 Young Kings Monarch Stephen Marcelle do the same. I applaud and admire calypsonians who include other genres in their repertoires. Among those who have impressed me, coming easily to mind, are Sparrow, Sugar Aloes, Denyse Plummer, Baron, Destra, Karen Eccles and Denise Belfon. But, Marcelle, who is blessed with the most beautiful of voices, complete with range, pitch and diction is really special.
Titling his set R&B/Slows in yuh clothes, his repertoire of covers included Night Shift (Commodores); Hero (Enrique Iglesias); All of me (John Legend); Just don’t wanna be lonely (Main Ingredient); Love TKO (Teddy Pendergrass); Never too much (Luther Vandross); You got it bad (Usher); When you’re mad (Ne-Yo); You’ll never find (Lou Rawls); Ascension (Maxwell); Stuck on you (Lionel Richie); Sacrifice (Elton John); and, the reggae version of Human Nature. For an encore Marcelle sang Kingston Town.
It may be a good idea for TUCO to assemble some of these well-rounded calypso/soca artistes for a “love concert” and not wait until next year to hold it in February for Valentine’s.
Convent stars at world contest
The St Joseph Convent Choir ( SJC) Port-of-Spain, participated in the just-concluded World Choir Olympics, held in Riga, Latvia, on July 12-13. The girls left T&T on July 5 and returned on Wednesday. The convent singers did our nation and region proud, attaining the silver medal in the competition.
Producer Lisa Wickham said: “It means that at World Championship Level they have attained silver which is quite an honour for a first-time entrant. Many of the other choirs were in awe and very happy for the girls. To secure a place in the championship segment out of over 100 choirs from across the globe is remarkable; SJC being only Caribbean/T&T choir represented there.”
Under the direction of Michelle Varley, the choir’s repertoire included Andre Tanker’s Sayamanda; David Rudder’s The Ganges & The Nile; and, Telfer’s Magnificat.
Ministry of The Arts and Multiculturalism official Peter Telfer added: “The SJC Choir of 44-plus young people deserves acknowledgment and support for this achievement.”