Chibale (pron. chee-bah-leh) the drumming and performance group made up of the children of the Idakeda family, will be part of the drumming contingent for the 2009 street production of Canboulay. Ajani, Shomari and Kayode will join Xavier Philip, master drummer and a member of the Idakeda family and scores of drummers from other national groups, to provide the drumming accompaniment for the pagent. The show takes place at 5am on Carnival Friday, February 20, on the Picadilly Greens in Port of Spain. A parade of traditional carnival characters will follow the main show.
The reenactment of the Canboulay riots in the vicinity of the All Stars Pan Yard by the Regional Carnival Committee of the NCC now unofficially begins the Carnival celebrations. The street production was formally scripted by playwright and current Poet Laureate of Port of Spain, Eintou Pearl Springer.
This year's production is directed by Eintou Springer with Norvan Fullerton. The cast of main characters features Muhammad Muwakil and Roderick ‘Chucky' Gordon as the story-telling Pierrots, alongside Keon Francis and Ken Alexis as the boismen and Camille Quamina as Cariso Jane. Eintou Springer will play the role of the Elder who gives spiritual guidance to the people in their struggle against colonial domination.
The story of Canboulay reminds us of the roots and history of Carnival and the bitter struggle that masqueraders waged in defense of their right to cultural expression. The British colonial administration, through its police chief Captain Baker had determined to stamp out the jammette carnival of Port of Spain's working classes. The 1881 riots ensured the continuation of Carnival.
In 2008, Chibale were consistently on stage, with performances at Nalis for Emancipation, Arima for Amerindian Heritage commemorations and at the Central Bank for the Eintou Springer tribute to local Master Artist Leroy Clarke. Canboulay is their first public engagement for 2009 and they intend to remain very busy for the rest of the year.
See you at the show!