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Wednesday, February 25, 2009

Carnival Comments & Assessment

This very well thought out and written observation of Carnival 2009, the bands and their impact was sent to me by a reader; I appreciate these types of comments as I cannot be everywhere during Carnival and it is nice to get a perspective of what it is like in other bands.

Interesting topic for discussion after you read it is,Who will survive and what's in store for 2010?

I did not play mas this year so I had a lot of time to move around and observe various bands. Got tons of pictures and video. Anyway I just thought I'd share my assessment with you:

-Visited this band on Ariapita avenue on Monday and at their restpot on Tuesday and rejoined the band again on Ariapita Avenue later on.
Very organized in all aspects. Everything from A-Z was well planned out and executed.
-The only thing I could fault would be the restspot which is evidently too small for that size of band.
-Kudos for the last lap at Jenny's car park.
-Tribe should be commended. They continue to set a very high standard and once they keep it up they will undoubtedly be a very hard act to follow. Not impossible b ut hard.

-Visited on Tuesday at their restspot.
-Very small. Had about 300-400 masqueraders maximum.
-Their masqueraders consisted of a lot of socially well known people and everyone seemed to be having a great time. The general mood of everyone was very upbeat and the persons who I spoke to all said they were having a fantastic time, rain and all.
-1 bar truck, well designed and two music trucks. This worked well for them in that it compressed their numbers so at first glance it did not look so sparse.
-1 on the road grill truck
-1 mobile toilet truck, with 5 toilets.
-Did not observe an ambulance or airconditioned rest truck.
-Rest spot and pampering center was the carpark opposite the Canadian embassy near to Trotters. Well laid out. Small, but worked well for their limited numbers.

-Visited Monday and Tuesday.
-Also very small. Had about 400 -500 masqueraders maximum.
-Paprika and Sea Salt seemed to have had the best turnout.
-Very diverse crowd but for some reason people did not seem energized and enthusiastic.
-The persons I spoke to said they were having a good time and the persons I knew that played with the band told me today that it was great.
-3 music trucks and 3 bar trucks.
-However, the decision to use 3 music trucks with those numbers was a very bad one as it spread the small numbers and made the band look very sparse. The result was that the band looked empty on Monday and very sparse on Tuesday. This might explain why some people were saying that Elements was small but had more people than Spice.
-Extraction team was good.
-Rope and other security could have been better.
- Ambulance and aircondition bus were present.
-Bar design and signage was very poor. To reach a drink comfortably you had to be nearly 6 feet tall and I am not exaggerating.
-Rest spot was okay. The band has the best restspot but the potential was not capitalized on. There were no frills just basic tents and a few tables and chairs.
-Food was good on Tuesday. However, although there were several advertised selections - barbeque, creole etc, there was only one actual choice on Tuesday.

-Checked this band on Monday at Cipriani Boulevard
-Only saw a handful of masqueraders and I literally mean a handful.

-Visited this band on Tuesday
-Good turnout
-Bar trucks well designed.
-Band seems organised

I also visited RONNIE & CARO, TRINI REVELLERS and a few others but did not catch up with IP.

2010 will indeed be very interesting as many of the new bands would have definitely absorbed huge losses.

Based on what I observed from the turnout and what I know of the cost structure, Elements and Kaotic will have to absorb losses somewhere between $500k and 1M and Spice, between 1M and 1.5M. With those losses and a very bleak economic outlook for 2010 it will be interesting to see who survives into 2010 and for that matter beyond.

Carnival Tuesday Photos..

Carnival 2009 has come and gone but the memories will last for a loooong time! I had a BLAST, rain and all (I did waterproof my feathers) and I LOVED my costume; best costume I have ever worn in my life!

Here are some photo of the Carnival Tuesday 2009:

Most are of TRIBE but there are also some of Wee International, Masquerade and some other individuals... enjoy!

Review to come later.
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