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Youths drive Chaguanas mas

Wednesday, February 14, 2018
The Original Whipmasters from Couva demonstrate whipping each other.

Chaguanas will become the Mecca of traditional mas in South and Central, according to Chaguanas Carnival Committee (CCC) vice chairman Ronald Heera.

Heera made the comment as the CCC held its Traditional Mas showcase on Carnival Monday night at Ramsaran Street, Chaguanas.

Heera said instead of giving prizes the CCC offered an appearance fee as an incentive.

“We have steelpan, bands from as far as La Brea in the south and the Jungle People from Grand Riviere in the north,” Heera said.

“We want to create a greater interest in traditional mas and spur on the next generation. We have had some success over the years, as we see more and more young people getting involved. Tonight we saw young Sapphire Joseph playing the Midnight Robber. Sapphire’s grandfather, the late Ivan Ryce, was a legend in the world of the Midnight Robber. We had another young lady, 12-year-old Jade Ching Hong, who also portrayed the Midnight Robber and gave an excellent performance. Young people are playing Jab Jabs, we are on the right track.”

Chaguanas Mayor Gopaul Boodhan added: “Traditional mas is a wonderful thing, it allows for the creativity of one generation to pass to another.

“I was touched to see six-year-old Sapphire Joseph and Jade Chin Hong put forward so much energy and enthusiasm in their performance. This would inspire other youth to combine the artistic elements of drama into Carnival. This is something we want. I want to see youth use their energy into becoming creative and dynamic as they contribute to building our culture.”

Boodhan said he hoped the National Carnival Commission would pump more support into traditional mas.


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