Home' Trinidad and Tobago Guardian : April 13th 2017 Contents B8 life
guardian.co.tt Thursday, April 13, 2017
New comedy-kaiso venue
Comical calypsonian/composer Myron
B is one of the humorous calypso stars
expected to perform on Kaiso and
Comedy Wednesday’s at Q’s Place,
Wrightson Road, Port-of-Spain.
so bring on
Parang during Easter? If you never heard
of it, maybe it’s just because it has not been
active for quite some time. But yes, parang
is not just for Christmas time. In fact, tra-
ditionally, it was more synonymous to the
Easter period which speaks of the death and
resurrection of Jesus Christ.
The San Rafael Authentic Parang Association
of T&T and the San Rafael RC Church are trying
to revive this idea with a competition titled Easter
Parang, to take place at the San Rafael Recreational
Grounds on April 16. Several parang bands will vie
for the first place cash prize of $10,000 sponsored
by Unicomer (Trinidad) Ltd, a second place prize
of $8,000 sponsored by Charran’s Bookstores and
the third place prize of $5,000 sponsored by Patrick
Ramharrack from Brazil.
Darcelle Charles, committee member of the As-
sociation and manager of the young parang group
La Nueva Experiencia, who is also collaborating
with the Association to make the event a success,
explained traditionally, parang was sung in T&T
particularly in the rural areas both at Christmas
and at Easter time.
The house parang tradition where parranderos
would go from house to house bringing the gift of
music to homes across the country was popular
for over the last 100 years.
Over the years, however, the parang tradition be-
came more synonymous with the Christmas season
and less with Easter time. Most of the parang events
would take place during the Christmas season with
songs focusing on the nativity so that the Easter
parang tradition of songs that focus on the passion
(the resurrection and crucifixion) of Jesus Christ,
became less prominent nationally.
“This Easter parang event strives to bring the
Easter parang tradition on par with the Christmas
parang tradition by launching the first ever Easter
parang competition in T&T. It also serves to elevate
the parang artform on the whole during this time
when parang has been forced to reside in the shadow
of more popular cultural artforms throughout the
country,” said Charles.
She stressed: “This event is really to promote and
preserve the Easter parang tradition throughout
T&T thereby increasing awareness and encourag-
ing greater appreciation for the authentic parang
tradition nationally and internationally.”
The event will also feature several guest bands
including Rio Suave, Universal, Rebuscar, Los Ale-
gres Sin Duda and La Nueva Experiencia.
Parang bands competing will each be required to
sing one song on the passion and one tune of choice.
Besides the music there will also be sale of authentic
Spanish, Latin American and parang-themed food;
sale and display of art and craft specific to parang,
door prizes, presentation of special awards to parang
honorees, and guest performances.
Behind every dark cloud there
is a silver lining. Irvin “Blackie”
Blackman aims to fill the void
left by De Nu Pub’s fiery death
on March 26 by launching a new
weekly event—Kaiso and Come-
dy Wednesdays—at the Q’s Place
club, beginning on Wednesday,
April 19. Q’s Place is just above
SWWTU Hall, along Wrightson
Road, downtown Port–of- Spain.
“It’s a central location for people
from any direction,” said Blackman,
thanking Anthony John (Mr Q), a
popular radio disc jockey, for giving
calypso a new weekly space.
Under the Soca Parliament
banner—a coordinated effort of
like-minded people who are all
part of Blackman’s social circle—the
weekly comedy and kaiso showcase
will kick off at 8:30 pm and end at
midnight. Blackie assured that there
is adequate parking on the club com-
The entertainers will be backed
by Vincent Rivers & The Soca Unit.
Patrons will be treated to a slate of
comical local calypsonians whom
Blackie feels have long been denied
a space to show off their talent.
“There are some really good hu-
morous calypsonians out there—fel-
las like Alpha and Kid Calaloo and so
many others. They will be showcased
at Q’s Place every Wednesday start-
ing on April 19,” said Blackie.
Blackie says he’s had the idea for
quite a while, having approached An-
thony John last August with a request
for use of the facility.
Blackie says there is a need for this
entertainment outlet, especially for
mature kaiso music lovers.
“There really isn’t much available
for people who enjoy kaiso music—
and there definitely is a market. The
Mas Camp was that home for kaiso,
in the minds of many, so while I am
personally saddened by the tragic
situation that took place last month,
this effort to bring Kaiso and Com-
edy Wednesdays to life is likely to
encourage people to come out and
enjoy the local music and entertain-
This isn’t Blackie’s first promo-
tional effort. He’s been a part of event
promotions in the past, key among
them the 2007 staging of the Carib-
bean Soca Fest event at the National
Stadium. He says he will work hard to
ensure that patrons get exactly what
they want at the new weekly shows.
“When I did Caribbean Soca Fest,
I went through every artiste’s reper-
toire and I told them exactly what I
wanted them to perform. I’ll be do-
ing the same thing this time around,
so that the people get the hits they
love,” he said.
Excited about future prospects,
Blackman and his team anticipate
the inclusion of Caribbean acts.
MORE INFO / SPECIAL PRIZES
See the Facebook page of the San Rafael
Authentic Parang Association.
• THE FAROUK KHAN MEMORIAL TROPHY: To
honour Farouk Khan, a past committee member
of the San Rafael Authentic Parang Association
and parang stalwart.
• YOUTH AWARD: To recognise the band which
shows the best youthful spirit and energy of
• BEST ORIGINAL COMPOSITION: To encour-
age new parang compositions. For the band that
composes the best original Easter parang song.
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