ABOVE: Paige de Leon of the Fete Promoters Association; Jules Sobion, commander-in-chief of Caesar’s Army and Brevard Nelson, President of St Mary’s College Past Students Union discuss the success and challenges of 2019 Carnival at Uncorked Wines and Spirits. PHOTO: LoopTT
Carnival fetes are driving the success of the season and promoters want the authorities to cut down the red tape involved in putting on major events.
This was the view of three major players in the fete industry during a recent discussion that looked back on the Carnival 2019 season. The discussion is featured in this bonus episode of Talk Bout Us.
Paige de Leon of the Fete Promoters Association; Jules Sobion, commander-in-chief of Caesar’s Army and St Mary’s College Past Student Union president Brevard Nelson cited inconsistencies in the process to obtain bar and dancehall licenses as one of the major challenges.
The three joined Franka and LoopTT’s Ricquolia Phillip for the chat at Uncorked Wines and Spirits in Port of Spain.
They also remarked that more foreign-based Carnival lovers are travelling to Trinidad during the Carnival season to attend the most popular “big ticket” fetes.
Sobion, whose organisation stages the event Bacchanal Road two weeks before Carnival, said there was a significant increase in attendance by Trinis who lived abroad.
He said many of the foreign-based Trinis were unable to get time off for Carnival week so instead opted to come for Bacchanal Road which is styled like an actual jump up – complete with DJ trucks and Mondaywear.
View the video of this discussion on LoopTT’s website.
Produced by Ardene Sirjoo for Trini Good Media and Laura Dowrich-Phillips for LoopTT.
Theme music and technical assistance by Lyndon Livingstone – Razorshop Productions
Location courtesy Uncorked Wines and Spirits, Tragarete Road, Port of Spain.
The Theatre and Dance Halls Act is an anachronism. It’s continued application to the letter of that law and features coming out of it like the notion of peddling (scalping, corn soup outside the fete) and cursing is a nuisance, in some cases, thus illegal is allowing for the continued application of rules that do not engender an entertainment industry that is more and more focused on “live” and the fete aesthetic, than the production and legacy of soca and calypso. Great discussion. Hopefully all promoters can come together to lobby for a more effective event management law. Patron safety and economic management of IP and other commercial rights are paramount, but willy-nilly application of a law and the persistence of a system that allows police to unscientifically allocate a force to be paid in cash outside of a regulated system should not be allowed to continue.