IT is well established in human behaviour through the march of time that there is nothing like an opportunity whose time has come.
Equally important, in the here and now, is the manner in which the widest cross-section of interests have joined themselves in making good on the injunction that a crisis is a terrible thing to waste.
Under normal circumstances the people of Trinidad and Tobago would usually wake up on what would have been Carnival Monday yesterday and Carnival Tuesday today, with a new sense of pride and accomplishment.
We have nevertheless set off, albeit forcefully, on a journey that will transform the way in which we define ourselves culturally, and how we relate with the rest of the world in the presentation and celebration of one of our biggest standard-bearers, the Trinidad and Tobago Carnival.
We have made the point here before about the can-do spirit which pushed us to rise up out of the sense of uncertainty and unease arising from the restrictions imposed by the global pandemic that is Covid-19.
Challenged by the sheer force of commitment from promoters, producers and other “creatives” in the cultural sphere, the National Carnival Commission fashioned a presentation which replaced the normal Dimanche Gras show at the Queen’s Park Savannah. At the National Academy for the Performing Arts in Port of Spain, at its sister facility, the Southern Academy in San Fernando, at Queen’s Hall and at the Little Caribbean Theatre, and at other venues in various parts of the country, there were events and shows in what has become a season like no other.
Television and radio outlets worked to incorporate into their programming aspects of many of these events, which were available to audiences at home and abroad, as perhaps never before.
The Chutney Soca and Soca Monarch competitions were well subscribed by artistes. In several instances, in at least one case in the Little Carib, and in the case of a Queen’s Hall production by the Patrons of the Arts Foundation, producers used the moment to emphasise the roots of the Trinidad Carnival, and the characters behind what is Traditional Mas.
Significant energy was put alongside the attendant imperative for finding the best possible outlets for attracting global audiences. It is to the credit of those so engaged, that we go on from here, with a renewed sense of pride and expectation.
A new template has been created, upon which the creative energies of our people must be used to trigger the long-called-for diversification of the economy, using the lessons from this cultural sphere, and of this moment.
The population at large must also be complimented for the exemplary restraint demonstrated in the main in abiding by the regulations and the guidelines against unnecessary gathering, and remaining Covid-compliant.
We move onward, and outward, with a new sense of purpose and of mission, continuing to build on the brand that is team T&T. This even in the face of the many challenges which we must confront.