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Thursday, May 20, 2010


So May has become the band launch month, whereas in the past it was June. There are still bands (Callaloo, Connections, Guy Can Group, Pleasure Players, Doldron, Doldron & Associates, and DeFrietas Carnival ?) to launch soon or next month though.

To date 1/2 Carnival Nationz sections are sold out, with Big Bamboo being the latest. Obeah Wedding is gone from their site.
Saldenah's Portrait of a Rose and Autumn (XPats) are sold out, and now also India and Indonesia frontlines.
Toronto Revellers Infatuation frontline and men's, and Ebony & Ivory frontline are sold out.
Tribal Knight's has Rodeo Dreams, Indulgence, Show Time, and Champagne on Ice remaining.
The order of the bands hasn't been picked yet. I understand why this is being done, but I really don't like it.
There's been a lot of discussion about themes this Caribana band launch season, with masqueraders either feeling designers did a great job representing it, or not. You can sense the devotion to a certain band or particular designers in many comments, and you can tell who the traditionalists are.
Some themes I may not get immediately, but once I start to imagine possibilities, it begins to change, and then it helps when costumes come alive on stage. But I admit I don't get Halloween as a carnival theme. I keep thinking "this is mas, not Halloween". I know vampires are hot, but do we really want to resort to playing black cats, evil witches, bats, devils, ghosts, and goblins? Don't we do that on October 31st?

I like to see a costume fit the theme, and for designers to boldly go beyond beads & feathers in their mas (Salt Fish, Portrait of Canada, Egypt). I appreciate the use of fabric, soft plastic, & even a bit of fur in a costume, and headpieces need not always be feathered.
And like I said in March, for Caribana, we're talking bikini mas. It used to be traditional style mas back in the day, but since I've been playing (started in 2000), the bike shorts & sports bras have gone the way of the bikini. Whether some bands (I'm thinking Mas Toronto and Toronto Revellers) will take us back to real traditional mas remains to be seen in the years to come. They've already started by reintroducing what most people see as more coverage, but it's really using elements of traditional mas.

Have a great long weekend everyone, we're away this one.


llleeesssaaa said...

Thanks for the insight Karabana. I have a quick question, since CNz won band of the year last year, aren't they guaranteed to cross the stage second (after ScotiaBank's float)? I'm not sure as to how the order is chosen.

Trini-in-Toronto said...

I don't know the exact rule, I think if that was the case, somebody would be shouting it from the rooftops.
Maybe a section or band leader can give us some details on how the draw works?

Anonymous said...

Kara, I totally agree with you regarding the order of the bands. This should have been done already.
I contacted the Caribana website and I was informed that the order of the bands will be available on June 1st.

Karabana said...

I've heard conflicting reports on when the order will be released... this week, or just before the parade, & now June 1st? Arrrgh!!!!

The top eight bands draw in the position of the results of Band of the Year the previous year. For example: if you placed second last year, you're called second to draw from 7 balls, 3rd place draw from 6 balls, etc.
From: http://karabana.blogspot.com/2009/05/interview-with-band-leader-louis.html

llleeesssaaa said...

Thanks for the clarification!

Karabana said...

Now I've been told it's next Saturday.

mass#1fan said...

Hey Kara...I love this blog it is great you always have all the info. Keep up the good work. I have a request for you. I think you have done it before. I am looking for shoes for my costume wanted to know if you had any ideas. Can you do another blog on shoe choices.

I am playing with CNZ-Sasa Yeah (Frontline)still trying to decide between running shoes and boots (ankle preferably) but really trying to get the best match possible. Also anyword on postion of the bands. I think it is not a good idea it being done this late this is usually how people decide who to play mass with as well. This could make people upset if they choose a band and then find out they not crossing the stage until like 8th . We all know if you are not in like the top 5 you are not leaving CNE grounds till after 3:00..lol...I am still excited anyway.

Take care..thanks in advance for you info

Karabana said...

Thanks very much mass#1fan, I appreciate it.
The latest word is the order is coming out this weekend. I will publish it as soon as I'm told.
That's the very reason the bands aren't picking/announcing the order yet, bc they want ppl to register first. But most of us experienced masqueraders know that we need to know the order 1st before any decisions are made.

Yup, it's coming, I've been preparing a post on footwear, one of my fave things. :-)

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