Hard work ‘pays off’
Barbados’ two young calypso kings – Browne Star and Quon – are ecstatic about their victories.
Both were favourites to win the Scotiabank Junior Calypso Monarch held in association with IGM Stage Lighting competition on Saturday night at the Wildey Gymnasium, and the audience erupted at the announcement after waiting past midnight, more than an hour after the competition ended at 11 p.m. to hear the results.
Browne Star, who outdid the competitors in the seven to 12 group with 86 points, presented a solid argument against bullying in his song, Peace. His video presentation showed him in a classroom being hit by classmates in retaliation for “telling the teacher”. On stage, he was dishevelled and bruised, the effect of being bullied.
Singing that he was using his power of choice and refusing to retaliate, he was “recognised” on stage as a peace ambassador by director of the Power of Choice, Errol Griffith.
In a recent interview, Browne Star told the DAILY NATION that he wanted to win the crown as it was his last year in that category after four years. He will be moving on to the 13 to 18 category next year.
In a brief interview after the presentation of the trophy and posing for photos, he told the media that everything went as he wanted.
“I feel relaxed. I feel relieved and happy. Now, I get to go home and relax,” he said.
Second-placed Mighty Bit Bit, who secured 72 points, will have to wait another year to get the crown. Singing Please Give Bit Bit The Crown, the seven-year-old contestant may have been a newcomer to the competition this year, but he captured the hearts of several people in the audience, many of whom were singing and swaying in their seats during his performance.
With four more years in this category, it is expected that he will improve on his enunciation and delivery of his lyrics.
Both Sakarah, who copped 64 points and third place, and Master Kei, who received 58 points to earn fourth spot, gave good performances with Colour My Barbados and Homeless Not Hopeless, respectively.
The other contestants in this category were KCB, Star Diamond, Joshua B, and Just Kari.
The mere two points separating the top three places in the 13 to 18 category was evidence of the high level of performances from Quon, Yahandje and Dynamo.
Singing first, Quon set the standard really high. With a new verse in Why I Sing declaring he would be the king, he was engaging, his rendition was superb, and his video presentation which was evidence of his rejection from 2013 and his mother’s admission that she told him to walk away, was simple but very effective.
He said afterwards: “I feel great that the hard work has finally paid off. Everything I practised was well executed tonight and I was happy with the results. When I first got the number one position, I was a bit insecure about it but then I decided I got number one, I would go out and set the bar high and leave the others to catch me.”
Delivering a solid performance to gain 80 points and second place was Yahandje. Her profound Don’t Cry should be a required comprehension passage for all secondary school students. It highlights a young girl’s wayward behaviour which ended tragically with her death from HIV/AIDS and contains a not so subtle message for parents about loving their children, whose behaviour in this case saw her “hunting for affection”.
With 78 points, third place Dynamo’s performance of Tales From De Crypt was the theatrical production it was expected to be and the audience loved it.
Complete with wailing mourners at the casket, him emerging from “de crypt” to tell the story of being “de baddest” man on the block before he was killed by someone “badder dan me”. He urged those living this life to stop before they too, were killed.
Rounding out the top four spots was De Overcomer, who scored 58 points after performing Bon Appetit. He visited the restaurant Voyage Aux Caribes where he got a mouthful of the bitter taste of violence and other societal ills from the waiter before also receiving a new recipe for making the situation better.
Princess Make’da, Symar, Miracle and Raanan were the other finalists.
MC Darrio Prescod was entertaining and the junior calypso monarchs of Trinidad and Tobago and the St Kitts-Nevis Duane O’Connor and Mighty Sookie, respectively, also gave good performances. (DS/GBM)