Comments related to the article titled ‘Caribana Evolved from Emancipation‘.
TRUST:Trust between the CCC & it’s stakeholders has always been an issue, some-in the very minority (brd. mbrs) demonstrated arrogance, and some of the stakeholders did the same regardless of which Brd. mbr. they might have been talking with, It’s a grudge thay hold on for life-some times you have let things go.
LOCAL CALYPSONIANS: I recall the current Chair – Mr. Gomez protested publicly about this issue. The bottom line is revenue, and if they cannot sell tickets to an Event the Event had to be stacked with “headliners” and place a few of the locals in these shows. The Feds money was for Canadian Talent, that’s why the Isalnd would have a lot of local Talent of all type of artistes-not just calypsonians.
The calypsonians were given the resources to make CD’s and sell them to help with some income, not sure how much they sold, the person behind that idea was criticized hugely even by some calypsonians…
THE FUNDS BEING LATE: Primarily because the Audit was late. A late audit comprised of many things Invoices for services not in – a huge one; including the Mas Band Leaders. At some point when the CCC used to get about $800.000, the Bandleaders received $510.000, Steelbands – $80.000, the Calypsonians $30/35.000. The CCC would remain with the balance of $180/185.000 to put on the entire Event. although the Stakeholders were given the funds, the CCC had to be accountable for the funds to the City, obtaining receipts for expenditures were like pulling teeth, these are some of the issues where temper flared – the RO RESPCET SYNDROME. I am almost certain today when they asked for receipts for expenditures – they would definitly have it and have “on time”.
FMC VERY WELL PAID:
I am certain they are very well paid from what I understand (i stand to be corrected) the CEO-Halsted since 2006 got $72,000 and CFO-Doyle got $110.000. That was what the CCC got to run the entire Festival.
BANDLEADERS SNUBBED BECAUSE OF RACE:
Possibly – don;t know, but people from Trinidad & Tobago understand there are ALL races that gets involved in Carnival-not just blacks, although Carnival came from Emancipation; have we checked lately in Trinidad and see what race ratio is versus the country ethnic population?, have anyone taken the time to look at the races that play Mas here.
ONE MORE THING MR EDITOR: I know this will prompt some heated discussion, it appears to me that Trinidadian cannot say that they are a “proud people” they have to include Caribbean, Carnival here was stated based on the Trinidad syle Carnival, yes the make up of the original people at the CCC were a mix of all islands – they were a group that all knew each other because there little or no Caribbean people here at the time, but lately it seems that Trinidadian cannot say that Caribana is Trinidad Carnival, 98% of the people palying mas on Caribana day are Trinidadian, it is the same way Halstead is saying Caribana is “multicultural”. Caribana has to remain true to its core values, it come from the bowels of emancipation, it has evolved over the years, and it must be clearly understood, the difference betwen multiculticultural and celebrating multiculticualism is two different things, ALL ARE INVITED, – ANY RACE, COLOUR, CREED OR RELIGION to come celebrate with us “our” culture JOIN A BAND PUT ON A COSTUME AND DANCE TO SOCA & PAN; not bring our dance and music, can you see someone going into the Santa Claus parade with Pan & Soca music down the Parade – now that I think about it might not be a bad idea lol.
Two points to keep in mind:
The persons who established the FMC, as required by law to receive funding from the City, were / are all Black and outstanding leaders in the Caribbean community in their own right even before they were given the daunting task of managing Caribana. The FMC’s Board of Directors is composed of representatives from the TMBA, OSA, OCPA and other individuals who were recommended by the CAG.
The statement that Caribana is a multicultural festival is meant to be understood in the context of it being a Caribbean festival. The Caribbean is a multicultural, multi-ethnic society.
BIG question is “Who owns and control the festival today?” It appears from your article that the ‘original stakeholders’ have lost control of it. From my point of view I do not see how these original stakeholders could ever regain control of something that the city and other stakeholders (including the bandleaders) sees as a cash cow when they do not have the financial means and sadly after 39 years the organizational skills to run the festival.