Golden voices | Caribbean Beat

Originally written for and published in Caribbean Beat magazine in 2013 The half-century anniversary of Trinidad’s popular Marionettes Chorale It was all a little inevitable. My mother was the conductor, and my two godmothers were the executive management. Some of my best-established blackmailers are those who can recount me “conducting” from the audience as a pre-schooler, with frilly white socks on my hands. Dubbed a “Marionette-ette” by … Continue reading Golden voices | Caribbean Beat

Love after love | Caribbean Beat

Originally written for and published in Caribbean Beat magazine in 2008 Painting the Spectrum: A Celebration of Love It takes a fair amount of courage to put on a film festival in the Caribbean. Resources are often limited in terms of funding, venues, and sourcing Caribbean-oriented material. Nevertheless, in the last few years, festivals have emerged in several Caribbean nations, including Jamaica, Guyana, Barbados, Trinidad and Tobago, St … Continue reading Love after love | Caribbean Beat

The books are back: the Caribbean Literary Festival | Caribbean Beat

Originally written for and published in Caribbean Beat magazine in 2007 Just in its second year, the Caribbean Literary Festival is set to return to Antigua this November. The festival was launched by Montserrat-born sisters Joy Bramble, founder of the Baltimore Times publishing company, and Pam Arthurton, founder of Carib-World Travel. They wanted to make a contribution to the region of their birth by rebuilding Antigua’s national library, which … Continue reading The books are back: the Caribbean Literary Festival | Caribbean Beat

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

Jazzing up Jamaica | Caribbean Beat

Originally written for and published in Caribbean Beat magazine in 2007 June is jazz month in Jamaica, with the 17th Ocho Rios Jazz Festival continuing this year as the main attraction, running June 9-17. Founded back in 1991 by Sonny Bradshaw, the festival started as an experimental one-day event they called the Ocho Rios “Mini” Jazz Festival, featuring some of the most prominent names in Jamaican … Continue reading Jazzing up Jamaica | Caribbean Beat

Review: Carnival Messiah (2004)

I had heard all the buzz, and I’d read the awful deconstructions in the press, and was eager to see how I felt about Carnival Messiah. As I expected, I could see where the strong feelings for and against the production had originated. The programme described it as a ‘two-hour spectacular’, but in reality, it was some three and a half hours later that I made my exit from the … Continue reading Review: Carnival Messiah (2004)

A Marionettes concert diary

Originally assigned for and published in the Trinidad Express Newspaper in 2001 February. Carnival is over. Marionettes Chorale practices begin again. The holy Trinity (conductor Gretta Taylor, secretary Joanne Mendes and Assistant Musical Director Susan Dore) and the organising committee have been talking about a gospel, folk and spiritual CD to showcase local compositions and arrangements. Sounds interesting. We may even make a concert out … Continue reading A Marionettes concert diary