Letters & Opinion

Every Day Should Be Carnival

Image of Kensley Peter Charlemange
Image of Kensley Peter Charlemange
Independent Eye by Kensley Peter Charlemange

SO the calypso and carnival seasons are over. Who are the benefactors? The Soleil brand? The revellers? The calypsonians? The writers? The back-up bands? The vendors? The sponsors? The people?

“Every day should be carnival, every day of the year,” opines one calypsonian. I do not know if the calypsonians would agree; those who have to pay writers for their songs, those who have to pay their arrangers and those who have to pay for their recordings.

With only one tent before the quarterfinals, how does a calypsonian get to recoup his or her expenses or gain returns on investment? Do carnival bands make any money? The bands are not cooperatives, so its members are not the ones benefiting.

I read a Facebook post where someone remarked of a visiting couple who was interviewed had no idea that it was carnival in Saint Lucia. The many who came to carnival are Saint Lucians who live abroad and our French neighbours. Our carnival, I do not think, has that major pull factor to attract those other visitors.

The one thing we cannot escape is the therapeutic nature of carnival, which was the major reason for the calypsonian’s opinion of having carnival every day of the year. How can a person not like calypso? It is the mirror by which we make an evaluation of ourselves. It is our medium for venting and can also be a means for raising our collective consciousness. Politicians more than anyone else, I think, should use calypso as a gauge of the wider public sentiments on their policies.

Jazz was a major failure this year. Roots & Soul showed some potential though government is competing with the private sector. I must say that I did have my reservations in regard to the Sab as the venue for the hosting of the final events but having experienced it myself and being spared the rain downpour, it proved to have worked well.

The stage was well positioned, the performing area more than adequate. Sound, for the most part, was on point. The backstage area was very spacious. The judging area was strategically placed, there was seating for those who wanted, and the vending area was on the outer perimeter with adequate vending space for patrons.

I do not know why the roads had to be closed all the way from the roundabout that made it a bit difficult for those coming from the north on the public bus system to access. I am not one for the revelry, so I can’t comment much on that aspect. The Dennery segment I have had my say on but again it is a reflection of our society and what we embrace. The result can be detrimental or it can work to our benefit. Time will tell.

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