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Saturday, July 09, 2011

Parade of the Bands

1 - Mas Toronto
2 - Saldenah
3 - TruDynasty
4 - Callaloo
5 - Tribal Knights
6 - Revellers
7 - Carnival Nationz
8. Mas Players Int'l.
9. Fantazia Int'l
10. Black Sage
11. Connections
12. Concept Costume Creators
13. Bitter Lemon
14. Blues Carnival Fusion
15. Renaissance Mas
16. Spirits of the Caribbean

Ok everybody, this is the full parade in order of appearance.
 I'm a man who tries to embrace change. I'm all for coming up with improvements to the festival through innovative ideas  and approaches. I see the management committee has come up with some changes to the parade route, they have moved the judging onto the lakeshore and are having the bands do a lap in the CNE before hitting the road.
This allows them to lock down the CNE and charge admission to many more patrons who want to get a view of the costumes before the hordes of "spectators" jump into the bands. This is sounding like a good idea and it should allow for a less crowded way to see the parade. It sounds like a good option for people with children. Hopefully it will dissuade young mothers from storming the parade with baby and stroller in tow. Hopefully it generates some revenue and offers a good alternative to patrons.
The TMBA's plan to announce the order of the bands 3 weeks before the parade, has been executed. We can ask some questions about the success or motives behind the decision. Did it benefit the new bands who are making their first appearance in the class A group? Who did it benefit? Was it the masqueraders? Was it the larger bands with with loyal followings?
I'm really not asking this to be controversial, I really think I am missing something here, and would love to hear from stakeholders.
One person told me the motive was to have masqueraders choose a band based on the quality of costumes and services, as opposed to position in the parade. I could understand that motivation, If I am a band leader and last year I felt I had hot costumes, but lost customers due to parade position, I would push for this rule.
As a new band, maybe I would have wanted to roll the dice and see if I can beat the 4/7 odds to land an early spot. I'm thinking Tru Dynasty would welcome a few more weeks to capitalize on a number 3 position... is it a little late now? Does this policy protect the market share of established bands?

What you all think?


LushKizzez85 said...

I'm confused, is this the OFFICAL order? I thought it was to be announced July 19th??

Trini-in-Toronto said...

It can't be the 19th, they have to announce it before the children's parade which happens This Saturday Jul 16th up at Yorkgate Mall at 11am. The kids bands come down the road in the same order as the adult bands during the big Parade. I think I had heard the 19th also, but after that I heard it was to be on the 9th. We spoke to a couple band leaders and this is the real list.

Lisa said...

Trini, I personally think that band allegiance would supersede the order the band is coming down in. I am a loyal CNZer (not playing mas this year though for personal reasons) and I would have already secured my costume the week after the band launch, then would have just dealt with whatever order they were coming down the road in. Although, to tell the truth, I'm kinda glad I'm not playing this year because #7 is kinda late. But it it what it is.

I'm not sure if waiting so long to pick the order really has any impact on what band people will choose. I think the majority of people choose a band based on costume design, loyalty and price.

As for the new parade route, it looks like a good idea. I think it will definitely give masqueraders a chance to parade and party without any enumberances as they go through the CNE. Now once they hit the road, that might be another story. Hopefully there will still be some type of measures in place for stormers and it won't be a free for all.

I think having the CNE as part of the route will also allow families a more comfortable experience. I really dislike seeing mothers with strollers and toddlers trying to get through the crowd. But you know regardless, there will always be those who are too cheap to pay the admission price and will drag their children through the throngs of people.

It's nice to see that Scotiabank is thinking ahead and trying something new. If it doesn't work this year, then try something different next year until you get it right.

Karabana aka Toronto Caribbean Carnival said...

It's not clear who benefited from waiting & announcing the order on the 9th, although I have my suspicions. I heard that registration has not especially increased since the 9th for bands in the top 3-5, as one band leader told me. So I question this late announcement. Most masqueraders will tell you that they chose a band based on costume. I know I do. Some will say it's a tie between loyalty & costume. And bands know that if they brought out fantastic costumes, they won't care which position they get, they know they'll have their masqueraders. So for the confident A bands with security, it shouldn't matter which position they are in in the parade.
We all know the smaller bands are always 8-16, and this won't change unless it's decided to allow them in the top 7.

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