Home' Trinidad and Tobago Guardian : August 8th 2014 Contents B1
• Twitter: @GuardianTT • Web: guardian.co.tt
The Young Upwardly Mobile Adults
aka Yuma celebrates its fifth birth-
day as a Carnival band.
From Zodiac, to Press Play, to Imagine,
to Cirque and next year s Reign, the band
experience goes beyond 3,000 masqueraders
dancing along the streets of Port-of-Spain.
For this mixed committee of 70, ranging
from neophytes at 18 to university students
to the experienced in their 20s and 30s and
the elders who provide an anchor, Yuma has
created a family unit in and out of costume.
The formula for a happy band, they say,
is with the masqueraders. "Everything the
band goes through, we go through," said
Acacia de Verteuil, committee member.
"This year we had the perfect costumes,
no costume envy. We had things on point.
Next year, we want to duplicate the expe-
Tomorrow, at the Hasely Crawford Sta-
dium, Yuma will introduce Reign, which
presents 13 sections that portray different
aspects of historical rule across the globe.
"It encompasses the royal theme---empires,
kingdoms. We touched a lot of countries.
However, it is not necessarily a king or queen
but a piece of a dynasty. We did a lot of
research," said de Verteuil.
The theme may be similar to portrayals
presented in the days of stalwart bandleaders
like George Bailey who presented the fantasy
in historical themes.
But as fellow committee member Chase
De Souza points out, the band captured this
historical theme with a modern twist, adapt-
ing to the tastes of the present-day mas-
"We want to be relatable to the theme,
to have that old vibe, yet provide a balance.
We want to have a holistic impression of
the theme," said De Souza.
Among the designers is Crystal Aming,
the daughter of mas legend Neville Aming.
She has been designing with the band since
year one. There are also university students
who have become burgeoning designers.
Masqueraders David Dewer and Justin Scott,
who made their debut as designers last year,
have an input in the creation of the elaborate
headpieces and detailed body jewels.
Nevertheless, in creating the costumes
there is an interchange and exchange of sup-
port through suggestions in colour matching,
material, placement of pieces, overall cos-
"We took a page from (Wayne) Berkeley
by encouraging all our designers to grow.
We have a bar to meet. Everybody helps
each other," said De Souza.
"The point of the costume is telling a
story," de Verteuil said. "It helps us to remain
relevant and trendy plus the vibes we are
known for---filled with so much spirit and
youth, so much energy."
With an ongoing public discussion over
the trend in costume designs, the Yuma
team believes the "less is better" concept
depends on the masquerader. While
acknowledging that in this age sex sells, the
band must consider how it wants to be
"We like to keep it very tasteful," de Ver-
After five years, the main lesson these
young bandleaders have learned is not to
get too caught up in the business side that
the culture of mas is forgotten.
"It is also about looking at evolving cre-
ativity and we get to see what people like,
something trendy...because we still love the
culture," De Souza said.
• Continues on Page B4
For immigrants seeking to start a
new life in the United States, social
media can be an unlikely ally.
A new report in Reuters states
that Facebook and other social
media sites are helping to fuel an in-
flux in immigration of Central
Americans to the United States, cit-
ing officials in the US and Hon-
duras. These officials say that
migrants are increasingly logging
online for many aspects of their
voyage across the border from Mex-
ico, from planning the journey to
making the journey to keeping in
touch with family after the journey.
The report comes as drug vio-
lence in Central America continues
to increase the number of immi-
grants coming to the United States.
The number of unaccompanied
children and teenagers crossing into
the US is expected to reach as many
as 90,000 by the end of 2014 in
what Barack Obama called "a hu-
manitarian crisis" at the US-Mexico
Immigrants use Facebook to get to America
plans exciting reign
Medici, from Yuma's 2015 presentation Reign. The House of Medici was the
wealthiest political dynasty of the ruling Republic of Florence.
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