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Soca Monarch Fizzles
Posted By: Newsday TT
Date: Sunday, 16 February 2003, at 10:09 p.m.
By Joan Rampersad, Newsday/TT
Reigning Soca Monarchs Iwer George and Bunji Garlin can rest easy given the amount of nonsense that passed off for soca last Friday night at Club Caribbean.
After five hours and 45 soca artistes there were just about 10 of them who were able to move the crowd to any level associated with the normal Soca Monarch frenzy.
Also, with the volume of the music up more than normal, one wondered how coherent could the judges have been, when the final contestant Superblue appeared on the stage approaching 3 am.
The show began one hour late with Preacher and his "Portugal", followed by Dwayne Arthur, Nicole Greaves and Dwayne O’Connor.
It was when Maximus Dan appeared on the stage next, that the crowd came to life.
However, it was the Roy Cape boys Derrick Seales and Blaxx, complete with fireworks and dancers who literally lit up the evening with fantastic performances.
Also giving creditable performances were the Godfather Crew, the youths Young Marcel and Patrice Roberts, and Fayanne Lyons who showed off a lot of her father’s stage traits.
But it was Shammi that got the crowd in a total frenzy, performing "Soca
Bangra", a song that has been out since 1997. The question was asked on the night, whether the rules pertaining to old songs had been removed.
One will recall the Sonny Mann scene a few years ago, when the rule came to the fore. The rule in effect states, if a song has been sung at the previous Carnival or before, it is not eligible for competition. Efforts to contact the promoters about this matter yesterday, proved futile.
Judges for Friday night’s competition were Roland Gordon (Chief Judge), Junior Howell, Norma Clarke, Teddy Villaroel, Chris Seon and DJ Mario.
Fifteen soca artistes will be chosen for the final on Carnival Friday. Up to press time the results were yet to be known. When contacted, the chief judge said that the results will be out by Tuesday.
Two popular artistes Militant and Rikki Jai did not appear while Crazy, Impulse and Denise Belfon were all pre-judged due to overseas commitments over the weekend.
NCC cuts ticket prices
The National Carnival Commission went to market yesterday, slashing its tickets prices and simplifying the classes of seats for the 2003 Parade of the Bands at all venues and Dimanche Gras.
Sales of tickets will begin at the Grand Stand, Queen’s Park Savannah, on February 21 at 9 am. But the NCC yesterday released its list of prices which are down by as much as 50 percent from 2002.
Reserved Grand Stand seats for the Parade of the Bands on Carnival Monday and Tuesday will sell for $100, as against $200 in 2002; and unreserved for $60, as against $100 and $80 in 2002.
The new NCC seating plan also eliminates the "Red", "Yellow", and "Blue’ sections with their varying prices, all higher than the 2003 rates.
For Dimanche Gras, "Box" seats are offered at $250 ($300 in 2002); "Forecourt" and other reserved $150 ($200 in 2002); and unreserved $75.
In the North Stand all Dimanche Gras seats are $75 ($120 and $80 in 2002).
The decision to cut tickets prices was taken by the NCC Board meeting last week, at which members committed the Commission to bucking the inflationary trends and encouraging patrons to come out to shows at a time of some uncertainty in the social and cultural spheres.
National Calypso King semi finalists
The Trinbago Unified Calypsonians’ Organisation yesterday announced the names of the Semi Finalists for the National Calypso King Competition which takes place today at the Mas Camp Pub, Ariapita Avenue, Woodbrook from 11 am.
They are: Devon Seale, Roger George, Hollis Liverpool, Sean Daniel, Carlos James, Clifton Ryan, Roy Lewis, Dean Charles, Gilbert O’Connor, Steve Pascal, Duane O’Connor, Winston Henry, Kelvin Pope, Winston Scarborough, Winston Bailey, Morel Peters, Corey Burke, Soul Expression, Carlton Collins and Newton Thomas. Reserves include Emrold Phillip and Henson Wright.
Pan Trinbago Youth Arm warns against dishonesty
The Youth Arm of Pan Trinbago has sounded a warning to participating bands in the 2003 bpTT National Junior Panorama competition covertly using established arrangers to work on their musical arrangements.
Citing the rules of the National Junior Panorama competition, the Youth Arm said that Article 3 - section 11 states that each band must have a junior arranger (this arranger must never have arranged for a band in the Grand Finals of the senior Panorama).
As a result, any band found contravening any of these rules, will be subject to immediate disqualification, a release stated.
The executive of the Youth Arm of Pan Trinbago views such actions by school and junior band officials as dishonest and counter productive to the organisation’s effort to showcase the talent of young pannists and their arrangers.
Section 6c of the rules makes it clear that "officials of each Steelband shall be held responsible for the behaviour, conduct and general deportment of the members and representative Steelbands."
Competition in the 2003 bpTT National Junior Panorama competition billed as "Soca Pan Fest" will commence its three days preliminary run from Tuesday February 18, through Thursday 20, across the country.
Twenty-eight bands - 26 in Trinidad and two from the sister isle of Tobago - are registered to participate in the event.
The final is scheduled to take place on Sunday, February 23, at the Grand Stand, Queen’s Park Savannah, Port-of-Spain from 11.30 am, where 12 finalists by order of merit will vie for the first prize valued at $35, 000 and a challenge trophy.
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