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Monday, 10 March 2014

All Stars: Sailor Mas a true winner

TRINIDAD All Stars manager Beresford Hunte yesterday said the band does what it has to do and performs year after year, as he responded to statements from some bandleaders that they would challenge the award of the Band of the Year title to his steel-pan band.
“I don’t know on what grounds they are seeking to challenge this, I cannot speak for them but I can say this: we came out this year and performed and we perform year in and year out,” Hunte told Newsday. 

“We have never had a problem. That’s all I will say for now. They are free to go whichever way they want to go. We will simply await the outcome.” 

All Stars’ sailor mas portrayal of Sailors on Shore Leave at a Tropical Fiesta won the judges nod over such pretty mas bands as Legacy and Trini Revellers, both former winners. 

Meanwhile, former President George Maxwell Richards, an avid Carnival-goer, yesterday welcomed the news that a steel-pan band had won Band of the Year. 

“I think it is time a band like a pan band should win,” he said. “I think there is an important place for steel-pan in the festivities. However, I wonder to what extent this victory has been achieved due to penalties being applied to other bands.” 

Commenting on the general standard of Carnival this year, Richards criticised what he described as vulgar behaviour. 

“There is no question that the mas has become extremely vulgar,” he said. “We don’t have the same spirit of camaraderie of former years. For instance, this year, I went down on Carnival Tuesday to St Mary’s College grounds where one of the bands — Yuma, in which I played — was assembled. I found it disturbing the unruliness of the people, the wanton and reckless behaviour and I think we should accept results of competitions with good grace.” 

Of the much criticised “Socadrome” which saw some bands divert their route to the Jean Pierre Complex, Richards said, “I thought it was a useful initiative but it did not receive the support of the spectators and I can’t see how it can be a success in the future. Even people who were committed to place had misgivings.”


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