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Young Stars in Calypso Spektakula Thru The Years

Published: 
Friday, January 12, 2018
Popular Barbados artiste Rupee.

Young calypsonians will showcase their versatility in the art form by using their performances to pay special tribute to their elders at Calypso Spektakula Thru The Years to be staged from Thursday, January 25 to Sunday, January 28.

Nailah Blackman, granddaughter of the late Ras Shorty I (Garfield Blackman) and daughter of Abbi Blackman is a talented calypsonian in her own right. She began singing at age four, and two years later entered her first calypso competition. She joined the family gospel band where she sang back up under her aunt Nehilet Blackman’s supervision. At age 15 she left the band and went solo where she worked on demos with her uncle Issac Blackman.

When she performs with the cast at the opening programme of Calypso Spektakula Thru The Years on Thursday, January 25 at the Centre of Excellence in Macoya, her selections will include her interpretations of some of Ras Shorty I’s timeless compositions.

Aaron “Voice” St Louis is described as “one of the youngest leaders of modern soca music.” The 24-year-old artiste burst on the scene with his 2015 party anthem Cheers to Life, and became the youngest entertainer to ever win the International Soca Monarch title the following year (2016). In 2017 he successfully defended the title with the appropriately-titled selection Far From Finished.

Voice is on the cast for the Saturday, January 27 performance at the National Academy for the Performing Arts (Napa). He will not be doing tribute songs, but is expected to showcase selections from his impressive body of work that has made him one of the most-liked young acts in the Caribbean region.

Chucky (Roderick Gordon) won the Independence Calypso Monarch title in 2012 when the nation celebrated its 50th anniversary, and was crowned National Calypso Monarch in both 2014 and 2015, becoming one of the youngest contestants to capture the title at age 26. The young calypsonian who has successfully bridged soca and calypso, captured the first runner-up position in the 2007 International Groovy Soca Monarch Competition. Apart from his success in the Soca Monarch Competition that year, Chucky also managed to capture the Stars of Tomorrow title as well as become the first runner-up in the NACC-produced Young Kings competition.

When he appears on the second programme, presented by Spektakula Promotions, at the Southern Academy for the Performing Arts (Sapa) on Friday, January 26, Chucky will entertain the audience with songs from the extensive and varied repertoire of the Mighty Sparrow, the acknowledged Calypso King of the World.

Voice, Nailah and Chucky joins a star studded cast for the annual Calypso Spektakula Thru The Years which this year runs for four nights as follows: Thursday, January 25 (Centre of Excellence); Friday 26 (Sapa, San Fernando); Saturday 27 (Napa, Port-of-Spain); and, Sunday 28 (Clifton Hill Beach Club, Point Fortin)."

The artistes include David Rudder, Baron, Rupee, Lord Nelson, Chalkdust, Gypsy, Funny, Bally, Relator, Trinidad Rio, Explainer, Rikki Jai, Edwin Yearwood, Luta, 3 Canal, Ronnie Mc Intosh, SuperBlue and Iwer George.

“It is pleasing to have these young, talented artistes on the programme,” said Spektakula Promotions’ Frank Martineau. “That two have chosen to pay tribute to the calypso elders by showcasing their work, shows the respect they hold for the art form and its revered practitioners.” (reporting by Guest Reporter)