Antigua St John's - Business Manager at the National Festivals Office Richard Apparicio wants the Ministry of Culture to build its own resource centre, comprising both audio and video recordings.
He made the remarks at a ceremony at the Palms Restaurant to award calypso adjudicators who have completed training sessions, and Rupert “King Swallow” Philo, who is nearing his 50th year in the calypso arena.
Apparicio, the facilitator for the workshops, said such a centre would be of tremendous benefit to the adjudicators and the contestants.
He also called on the Calypsonians' Association to think about creating its own radio station, and said such a business venture would help take their product to a different level, making it export viable and marketing the artistes across the globe.
“See how the Mighty Sparrow stopped recording and remixed all his old songs with a modern soca beat, and reaping the financial benefits? I say no more,” Apparicio said.
The workshop facilitator said while the feedback from the workshop was encouraging, there is still room for tremendous improvement.
“For instance, and not only in calypso, many individuals register as contestants to participate in these state-funded competitions and are not familiar with the stipulated criteria,” Apparicio said.
He also urged contestants to attend the workshop sessions.
“It is one of our long-term goals to build a pool of adjudicators," he explained. "It is by the adjudicating process that standards are set. We are confident that this approach will surely bear positive results and uplift the creativity of our cultural practitioners.” It is through the adjudication process on a Carnival stage that Short Shirt, Obstinate, and Swallow became world-class performers on the entertainment stage across the globe.”
Among the areas covered at the workshop are the history of calypso, adjudicators` codes of ethics, and adjudicating a calypso competition. The participants said they were motivated and got a greater awareness and appreciation of the art form. Certificates were presented to the adjudicators and observers.
Although King Swallow was not on a stage Wednesday night, he was showered with accolades, standing ovations, and special awards for his almost 50 years of "marriage," as they put it, to calypso.
NFO’s Office Manager Patricia Tully took the audience down memory lane, mapping King Swallow’s contribution to Carnival since 1962 and his extensive career that secured many titles, including four calypso monarch titles and five road march titles.
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