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Saturday, March 27, 2010

Old Hollywood - new idea?

With Tribal Knights sneak peek of their presentation Hollywood Glitz and Glamour in 2 weeks, it has me wondering what design direction they'll take. I can easily picture glamorous old Hollywood translated into costumes. Of course things like feather boas, sequins, & long satin gloves would be no brainers, as would a white costume in honour of Marilyn Munroe's famous subway grate dress. But there are so many Hollywood movies & musicals that produced outstanding costume designs to draw inspiration from.

What modern day Hollywood costumes can you see?
Va-va-voom Dita Von Tesse
Corset, stockings, jewels

Maybe we'll see vampy trampy black lingerie a la the movie Nine?

Oh, what do you think of this Folies Bergere (from Nine) costume? Very carnival-y.

Or since fringe works so well for carnival, the Kate Hudson (also Nine) golden flappers outfit...

& speaking of flappers, wouldn't this outfit make a great costume with the pearls & single feather hat?

...oh & the gangster look for the guys. (lol)

I figure inspiration will come from so many Hollywood musicals, and not so much the last 10-20 year hits (like Grease or Flashdance), but the way-back-in-the-day classics.

Satiny one piece & jacket with top hats from A Chorus Line

There just has to be a tribute to Liza Minelli in Cabaret

What didn't Folies Bergere have? Cats, ballerinas, showgirls...

Um, probably not!

How fabulous is this Zigfield Follies butterfly!

As for a Queen, can't you just see a ruby red Audrey Hepburn gown?

Such a starlet look complete with the cape like wings (Ginger Rogers)

Go big - big dress, big hat as Scarlett O'Hara in Gone with the Wind

As well, does anyone else think of the old Hollywood pin up girl style converted as costumes?

How fun would this famous fuzzy Jayne Mansfield number be?

Ginger Rogers wearing the same top, popular look, hah. I really like the shoes.

So '50's, the polka dot bikini, & the bottoms, how cute

Ava Gardner striped one piece

As for headpieces, want different? Think Cleopatra

Or a jeweled Moulin Rouge "crown"

dripping in diamonds

Vintage 1950's feathered hats

If creativity is used, not to mention a variety of materials, this theme could be a big wow. Are you anxious to see the glitz and glamour?

Saturday, March 20, 2010

Protecting your product

Louis Saldenah has responded to some of the comments and questions raised after the letter to Tribe, and the Toronto Mas Bands Association meeting minutes were published on Trinidad Carnival Diary.

To whom it may concern
I did not want to get involved with all the comments on this blog, but I will try to clarify a few things.
Toronto Mas Bands Association (T.M.B.A) is comprised of all the bandleaders who participate in the annual Caribana parade (16) and associate members. Once the facts were divulged, a vote was taken by the membership and by majority vote, Tribe was denied entry into our parade. Upon the membership instruction, a letter was approved by the executive and forwarded to Tribe Trinidad.

The N.C.C and the N.C.B.A of Trinidad and Tobago Carnival have incorporated rules to protect their product. e.g. If you are not a national of T&T you cannot compete in the national calypso monarch competition, likewise if you are not a national of T&T you cannot participate in the king and queen competition, likewise a non national cannot win road march competition. A steel band from outside T&T cannot participate in the annual panorama competition.

Furthermore the queen of the bands from Toronto Caribana 2007 was entered in the queen of the bands competition in Trinidad 2008 and placed second. Due to protest from bandleaders, a rule was put in place by the N.C.B.A denying any future entry from outside T&T.

Does that mean bandleaders from T&T are afraid of competition or protecting their product?
And why would I be afraid of competition when I grew up in Trinidad when mas was mas alongside one of the greatest bandleaders who introduced sections mas into Trinidad Carnival "Harold Sally Saldenah" (Father)

Since someone with no regards for the association integrity choose to release the letter and partial minutes of T.M.B.A meeting to the public, I suggest everyone re-read the contents very carefully without bias. The majority of the members has spoken.

website www.saldenahcarnival.com

Wednesday, March 10, 2010

Caribana wish list

With one band launch just one month away today, and most of the others following in May, it's got me thinking about what I'd like for Caribana 2K10...

Here in Toronto our needs for Caribana are different than in Trinidad for Carnival. Many Trinidad all inclusive bands provide 2 days of unlimited drinks, food, port-a-potties, resting vehicles, etc. on top of their premium costumes. So when you pay minimum $500 US, you're paying for much more than a costume.
While it's true a lot of Caribana masqueraders play mas in Hamilton and even Barrie, they really have a shorter one day experience.
When I first played mas 10 years ago, I paid $100. In 2009, $155.

I understand that prices have to increase due to inflation - but with that price increase, I'm expecting quality to also increase. I can say that fortunately costume quality has improved year after year. Since we're talking bikini mas here, I realize designs are limited. But still, try to impress us! Designers, challenge yourselves, step it up every year, source out different materials, bring out complimentary colours & showcase creative costumes.

So, since it's mainly about costumes, on the top of my wish list is an outstanding, breathtaking headpiece. BIG, bold, beautiful. True, there are some masqueraders who aren't into big headpieces, or they don't even wear one. But for me, it's not mas unless I've got a crowning glory on top of my head.

Next, and equally as important, is a real bra. I've played in a string bikini top (2008), and it was my most uncomfortable mas ever. The strings dug into my shoulders, leaving indents. Yes, bruised for days. Very painful. Since the top was nicely decorated, and I figured I paid for this(!), I actually wore it again for Hamilton & Barrie. Yep, my craziness. But that's nothing, remind me to tell you what I wore at Caribana 2000... Anyway, real bras look much better than thin spandex. They give those of us who need it proper support. In 2007 the padded push up bra was fantastic (Water Lilies), and last year's La Senza bra worked quite well (Tembu Warriors).

                                                                                                                                                                                                                  When it comes to the waistband, the problem with that flimsy plastic that's the norm is, it rips, tears, breaks! The best waistband I wore was in 2008 (Anne Bonny). It was made of a strong material, and there was no way it was going to tear. So I know a stronger stylish material/cloth can be used. Oh, the best bottoms I had were American Apparel boy shorts, also Anne Bonny.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                Section leaders/designers, if you're significantly changing any part of the costume, communicate that, let your masqueraders know. You've got our email addresses, phone numbers, and many sections even have their own facebook groups.
                                                                                                                                                                                                                Ah yes, security. Whether it's rope pullers or a plastic fence, it should be apparent that bands need to provide some security. The barriers just haven't been cutting it. Wouldn't it be ideal if TO could do like NYC & have an army of cops along the route? But that's not happening. I suppose it's claustrophobia, because I hate feeling enclosed by stormers with no easy exit. It's not safe, that crush of people, and accidents always happen. Besides, they shouldn't be in the band anyway. (They didn't pay for this!)
                                                                                                                                                                                                                Finally, provide food, water, juice & pop, & I'm good to go.
                                                                                                                                                                                                                What's on your wish list masqueraders?

                                                                                                                                                                                                                Friday, March 05, 2010

                                                                                                                                                                                                                King Curtis

                                                                                                                                                                                                                Congrats to Curtis Eustace for another "King of Carnival" win at Trinidad and Tobago Carnival 2010.
                                                                                                                                                                                                                Louis Saldenah welcomes him in joining their band this year for Caribana 2010 as a section leader in Portraits.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                Caribana 2010 slideshow

                                                                                                                                                                                                                Mardi Gras, Hamilton

                                                                                                                                                                                                                Mardi Gras, Hamilton

                                                                                                                                                                                                                Blog Archive

                                                                                                                                                                                                                J'ouvert 2008!

                                                                                                                                                                                                                J'ouvert 2008!

                                                                                                                                                                                                                Mardi Gras 2010

                                                                                                                                                                                                                Buublenut, Megan & Karabana at Caribana 2007!

                                                                                                                                                                                                                http://www.westindiantube.com/view_video.php?viewkey=bcbeece3d9128ae855 a7


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