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CDC defends changing venue for Calypso Semi-finals

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Despite the negative criticism generated over moving the Calypso Semi-Finals to the La Croix boxing plant, the unofficial reaction by members of the Carnival Development Corporation (CDC) is that the decision was a good one.{{more}}

According to Anthony Dennie, CDC Coordinator of Shows, the idea of moving the Calypso Semis, dubbed as ‘Fantastic Friday,’ was discussed extensively.

“This was something that we were looking to do for three years now,” Dennie told SEARCHLIGHT.

He explained that discussions had been held between the CDC and Hassan Kennedy, President of the St Vincent Calypso Association.

At those meetings, a number of venues were identified, including the Biabou hard court and the Chili Playing Field in Georgetown.

But, according to Dennie, the Calypsonians’ Association agreed that the boxing plant at La Croix was best suited for the event.

“And I think the decision by the Calypsonians’ and the CDC to go to the boxing plant was a good one,” Dennie said.

He was also of the opinion that the turnout was good and that the venue created one of closeness.

Dennie also defended the CDC’s decision to stage the event away from Kingstown, saying that over the years, there had been a reduction in the patronage to the Calypso Semi-Finals.

“We figured that the best way to rebuild the appeal was to actually take it (Fantastic Friday) out to persons in the out districts.

While the majority of the patrons in the past came from Kingstown and surrounding areas, this year saw many patrons coming from Marriaqua and other rural communities, Dennie contended.

Despite a few negative comments from some patrons that they were not able to hear the songs properly, Dennie said that he and some of the other CDC officials were satisfied with the turn of events.

The show’s coordinator said that he was impressed that even after the full cast of Calypsonians had performed, patrons remained for the after show, which featured artistes such as Gao, Godfrey Dublin, Bomani, and New Sensation among others.

“Persons actually sat down waiting for more,” he said.

As for persons who may be asking if this will become a new trend, Dennie told SEARCHLIGHT that last Friday was a good start.

“It is something we look forward to doing in the coming years,” he said, adding that the CDC will be looking to stage the semi-finals outside the Victoria Park in the future.

Dennie, however, noted that the plan was to rotate it to other areas throughout the country. (DD)

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