St. John’s Antigua- Chairperson of the Calypso sub-committee Dion Simmons has expressed disappointment with the low turnout of calypsonians invited to participate in events that would give them exposure ahead of the Calypso Monarch quarter-finals on July 6 and 7.
In recent weeks calypso tents were opened to help artistes get their music “on the road,” but according to Simmons, most of the artistes have not yet responded to the invitation.
“What we were trying to do is move around to different hot spots and different bars, where these guys could sing over a CD. But we have only been able to get a handful of calypsonians,” Simmons added.
He is of the view all registered calypsonians should participate in the “practice shows” to become familiar with the stage, crowd and song they intend to perform.
“We are expecting there’ll be more calypsonians who will be ready to perform the songs they are using to go forward for the Wadadli Beer Calypso Competition. These guys need to be out there to master the new material they are coming out with,” the chairperson said.
In all, there are 79 calypsonians registered to take part in the run- up to finals, but only one would be crowned monarch this Carnival.
Simmons noted that there are so many participants so each calypsonian should grasp every opportunity to improve their game to get into the finals.
Meantime, he opined that the artistes should have started soliciting funds since last year to pay for their lyrics, music and all else needed for this year’s performance.
“After calypso monarch finals last year they should have started working for the next year,” Simmons said.
His remarks come on the heels of complaints by Adelza “Lypstyck” Sheridan, who said calypsonians have been unable to release music early because of lack of sponsorship and finances.
“They don’t go to any sponsors, they do it on their own and have been doing this for years. We are talking about calypsonians who have been making contributions for over 25 and 30 years and sometimes they don’t even make it to the finals,” Sheridan said.