PRESS RELEASE – The inclusion of a Small Steel band Championship and a Solo/Rhythm Band Competition on the carnival calendar are two new features for Lucian Carnival 2014 announced by the Carnival Planning and Management Agency (CPMA).
This component will see a number of local solo bands competing for their own title from this year onwards, joining the small steel bands, who previously showcased alongside the larger groups as part of Panorama.
The CPMA has indicated that this move serves a three-fold purpose :
(1) to enhance the cultural component of Lucian Carnival;
(2) to expose and build the appeal of these cultural forms to a more diverse local audience and
(3) to be more strategic in leveraging the authentic heritage forms as cultural products in the marketing of the destination to visitors who are keenly interested in this aspect of the tourism product.
It is the hope of festival organisers that the creation and incorporation of these new signature components in the 2014 carnival calendar of events will foster the development of indigenous bands and enhance the level of entertainment and performance from these groups, adding complexity to the musical offerings produced by the island.
Lyndon Arnold, chairman of the CPMA, further highlighted the importance of this inclusion, stating: “We recognise the impact that rhythm and solo bands have on our communities in bringing people together in a celebration of our culture. We believe that an infusion of culture in the schedule of events will make for a richer carnival experience for both locals and visitors.”
The Small Steel band Championship and Solo/Rhythm Band Competition is slated for Monday, July 14 at the Coco Cabana Car Park in Rodney Bay.
As part of the coordination and inception phase, the CPMA is calling on interested Solo/Rhythm Band parties, including organisers and participants, to register with the CPMA at the offices of the CDF by Thursday, April 26.
Coordination of the event will include discussions with interested persons, with the feedback shaping the development of criteria for the judging of the inaugural event.
Lucian Carnival is an annual cultural festival spanning six weeks each summer on the island of Saint Lucia.
Culminating with the colourful parade of bands along the three-mile John Compton Highway circuit into the capital city of Castries on the third Monday and Tuesday in July, Lucian Carnival is widely lauded as the best boutique Carnival in the Caribbean.