Pageant 2010 Taking Place on the Streets


Press - by Lincoln Depradine
June 4th, 2010
About the Author:
Lincoln Depradine, a communications and marketing professional, is author of “White Frock & Coals Dust: The Story Of A Community Called The Wharf.’’ It’s available at bookstores and online at www.grenadamarket.com

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"One of the pillars of Grenada’s carnival is getting a major makeover this year."

The traditional Pageant of costumed bands on Carnival Monday, usually judged indoors at Queen’s Park, is moving to the streets. Discussions are also ongoing with officials of the Grenada Steelbands’ Association (GSA) on their participation in Spicemas 2010.

This was among several issues discussed at a news conference Tuesday hosted by Grenada Carnival Committee (GCC) chairman, Colin Dowe, and Senator Arley Gill – the Minister of State with Responsibility for Culture.

Attendance at the Pageant has been on a steady decline, and has been a financial burden to the GCC.

“Taking the Pageant to the streets means we will save about $30,000,’’ Mr. Dowe said. “We really and truly made no money in hosting the Pageant at the National Stadium.’’

Sen. Gill said the exact street location of the Pageant will be disclosed shortly. He supports the venue change, saying it’s a chance for greater appreciation of carnival art.

“We want to take mas’ to the people,’’ said Sen. Gill, who is also Minister responsible for Information. “We believe that people must have an opportunity to appreciate mas’, to appreciate the craftsmanship of the costume designs.’’

Left: Colin Dowe - Right: Senator Arley Gill

The GCC chairman said he has been having “very progressive’’ talks with the GSA, which recently issued a press release stating that steelbands intended to “abstain’’ from the national carnival panorama competition.

Mr. Dowe said discussions with the GSA have confirmed that steelbands remain committed to carnival and culture in Grenada.

“They have recognized that pan is an integral part of carnival and as responsible stakeholders, they too want to play their part,’’ he said. “The commitment of the steelband fraternity to pan and to carnival is unwavering as is the commitment of the GCC. We are committed to giving a joint statement to the press.’’

The GCC has launched what it described as a “revamped’’ and “user-friendly’’ website, www.spicemasgrenada.com, to promote carnival 2010.

Mr. Dowe said GCC is also inviting additional corporate sponsors for this year’s carnival. Several are already assisting, led by telecommunications provider, LIME.

He said the GCC’s goal is to “try to trim the fat as much as we can, while still putting on a quality product in order to ensure that at the end of 2010, we would be able to be in the black. We would have covered the expenses incurred for the staging of Spicemas 2010.’’

The official launch of carnival will take place on Saturday, June 12, at the National Stadium. It’s a free family event. The theme of Spicemas 2010 is, "We Playing Ah Wicked Mas".