Songs of freedom | Caribbean Beat

Originally written for and published in Caribbean Beat magazine in 2007 This September, Geraldine Connor’s epic musical Carnival Messiah will be presented in a rather unusual setting. The mammoth production will be staged under a 1,000-seat big top on the lawn of the sprawling Harewood House, home of the Queen’s cousin the Earl of Harewood, and an estate built on the profits made from 18th-century slave plantations. Created … Continue reading Songs of freedom | Caribbean Beat

Remembering abolition | Caribbean Beat

Originally written for and published in Caribbean Beat magazine in 2007 On March 25, 1807, parliament in London passed a law formally abolishing the slave trade in the British Empire. The United States followed suit by banning the importation of slaves from January 1, 1808. It took many more years to end slavery altogether. Freedom for existing slaves did not come in the British territories until … Continue reading Remembering abolition | Caribbean Beat

Bird of Night (2006) takes flight | Caribbean Review of Books

Originally written for and published in the Caribbean Review of Books (CRB), November 2006.  There is a sketch next to Trinidadian Dominique Le Gendre’s Bird of Night programme note which captures graphically her own complex identity: individual, peer, family, national, collective, Asia, Africa, the Americas, Europe, Martinique, and Trinidad. As is perhaps the case with every Caribbean artist, the negotiation between all these identities finds expression through her creative … Continue reading Bird of Night (2006) takes flight | Caribbean Review of Books

It’s a brown world | Caribbean Beat

Originally written for and published in Caribbean Beat magazine in 2003-04 “Psssst! Red gyal! Spanish!” After “family”, those are the greetings I most often get from our always-friendly Trini male population. You may accuse them of being boldfaced, but you can’t say they don’t have a strong grasp of Trini ethnography. Brown skin and curly hair, like mine, usually mean a girl is one of two … Continue reading It’s a brown world | Caribbean Beat