A contingent made up of predominantly young artistes and artisans—including two graffiti artists and pupils of Fyzabad Composite School—will represent Trinidad and Tobago at Carifesta XI in Suriname from August 16-25.
Some of the 100 delegates, who will leave on Thursday for the regional event, were presented to the media by the Ministry of Arts and Multiculturalism yesterday at the Chinese Restaurant, National Academy for the Performing Arts (NAPA) in Port of Spain.
They include designer Delia Alleyne, the woman who taught Anya Ayoung-Chee how to sew prior to Ayoung-Chee’s Project Runway win; visual artist Darren Chee Wah; writer Dr Kim Johnson; former calypso monarch Karene Asche; chutney soca singer Rooplal Girdharie; and Independence Calypso Monarch 2012 Roderick Gordon,
The theme of this year’s Carifesta is Culture in Development.
Trinidad and Tobago will be represented in visual arts, literary arts, fashion, film and new media, dance, music, culinary arts and theatre.
The Trinidad and Tobago National Steel Symphony Orchestra is also expected to perform.
In his feature address, Minister of Arts and Multiculturalism Dr Lincoln Douglas said this year’s celebration is special in that Caricom is now observing 40 years.
“Carifesta really began in the 1950s but the celebration, as we know it today, was first held in Guyana in 1972 and has maintained its goal of celebrating the arts and fostering unity.
“The important role played by Carifesta is the underlying motivation for the decision by the Cabinet of Trinidad and Tobago to provide funding in the form of $3 million to faciliate the participation of a Trinidad and Tobago contingent,” said Douglas.
The minister added that this year special emphasis was placed on youth empowerment and innovation which, he said, are central to the development of a sustainable and high-performing creative sector.
Thirty countries are expected to participate in this year’s event and a grand market, young symposia, workshops, a trade fair, community festivals, country nights and mega concerts make up the nightly activities.