Written by 8:03 pm Music

Singing Crop Over’s praises – Barbados Today

Stakeholders within the 2022 Crop Over Festival have hailed it as successful despite the numerous challenges faced by the country.

And Chief Executive Officer of the National Cultural Foundation (NCF) Carol Roberts-Reifer has emphasised the “mammoth effort” it took to stage the festival in a short while and throughout the COVID-19 pandemic.

She made the comment this morning during a press conference where she was joined by some major participants within the festival who all spoke in glowing terms in regards to the festival.

Roberts-Reifer recalled. “We got word that we could present an idea transient for Crop Over [in] late February. We went to the general public led by the minister on March 22, and our first events occurred in May.

“Once we all do the calculations we will see what a mammoth effort it took to get to the general public each locally, regionally and internationally in such a brief space of time. But not only to get there but to get there with a product that by all reports has been heavily endorsed by all participants,” she said during a press conference held on the NCF headquarters.

This morning musical director of the National Youth Steel Orchestra Lowrey Worrell; tent manager of C.O.Williams House of Soca, Sharon Carew-White and curator of the Central Bank Crop Over Visual Arts Exhibition, Oneka Small, were stuffed with praise for this 12 months’s festivities.

Worrell, a music educator, said the pan programme on the island was growing. He said among the many 90-member group were some who had been recruited through the Pan within the Schools programme, which was initiated this 12 months by the NCF.

He described Pandemonium, which took place on the National Botanical Gardens, as an “amazing event” which surpassed even his expectations.

“The pan programme is growing. From out of Pandemonium now we have had individuals who’ve called and have began within the beginner’s programme because they liked what they saw,” he said.

Moreover, he said other countries including Canada and Trinidad and Tobago had reached out to praise the event.

Worrell called for investment from the private sector in providing more pans to the programme.

Carew-White, whose tent produced the 2022 calypso monarch Quon, in addition to Tune of the Crop winner Brucelee Almightee, said she was pleased with the support of the general public throughout the festival.

She congratulated the NCF for allowing artistes to make use of the Pelican Recording Studio, describing it as a “sensible” initiative which allowed artistes a chance to be recorded and to be heard.

“It meant that their music got to transcend to so much more individuals,” she said.

Meanwhile, Small, who oversaw a Season of Emancipation Visual Arts Series, said she was completely satisfied to see that visual arts had been included in a significant way within the festival. She said it provided a lot of artists with the chance to showcase their work.

“There was a robust feeling of inclusion of the visual arts inside the festival. We were a part of events and we actually felt included. A number of the time visual arts are likely to be on the skin but definitely Crop Over 2022 there would have been an excellent level of inclusion,” Small said.

Marketing officer on the NCF, Ashley Dyall revealed that social media had been widely used throughout the festival. She reported that significant interest had been shown by each Barbadians and individuals living abroad.

Dyall said 6 700 individuals watched the folks concert online, 113 000 viewed Grand Kadooment, 30 000 watched Junior Monarch while 29 000 viewed Pandemonium, suggesting there was a high level of interest within the festival. (RB)

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