Story telling has returned to children’s mas with the new Zanté Carnival Band and their 2020 presentation Inaru’s Gift. A good story for children must have magic, mystery and teach lessons and there is all of this in Inaru’s Gift. Additionally, in keeping with the core values of their organisation, the band will address the critical social issues of bullying and mental health. This is in light of statistics which show that a growing number of children and young people are being affected by mental illnesses from developmental disorders to depression and suicide.

Inaru’s Gift is geared for children 6 to 12 years old. Costumes include traditional characters such as Pierrot, Dame Lorraine and Sailors, and there are also depictions of the forest, ocean, and butterflies – all part of the magical story. The concept centres around two young Traditional Carnival Characters who are relentlessly bullied. One day after a terrible incident, they flee to the ocean to drown their sorrows and never return to their home, the Barrack Yard. Fortunately, their lives are saved by a series of magical events and a loving ancestor of the Traditional Mas. Her name? Inaru.

The carnival band evolved from the Zanté Carnival and Theatre Arts vacation camp which focuses on Traditional Carnival and Theatre arts. At the camp, the children learn to stilt walk, drum, wire bend and have story telling sessions, all culminating in a grand production for parents and supporters. An important feature of the Zanté brand is that it provides opportunities for children from vulnerable communities to participate in its programmes. This is achieved through sponsorship and donations from concerned citizens. For instance, this year the House of Angostura, in keeping with its on-going commitment to community and cultural initiatives has pledged its support through its Angostura LLB brand for children to participate in Inaru’s Gift.


The band and the story are the brainchild of Dara E. Healy, Band Leader and Creative Director. Dara is Founder of the Idakeda Group and the ngo Indigenous Creative Arts Network, ICAN; Dr. Eintou Springer is the main Creative Force. Inaru’s Gift has the involvement of a skilled, experienced and committed team. These include co-ordinator Donna Gittens-Charles, with 30 years of designing and producing children’s mas bands; Nia Thompson, also a producer of children’s mas and skilled in the carnival arts and project manager Hugh Thomas with over 16 years of experience. The exciting designs are the work of young designer Anthony Dinally with input by the creative team.

More information about Inaru’s Gift is available online at Zanté Carnival and Theatre Arts Connection on Facebook and Instagram at zantecamp. Interested persons may also contact 742 0535, 366 7558 or email


We would like to introduce you to the launch of our new Kiddies Carnival presentation for 2020 – Inaru’s Gift – Traditional Mas Reimagined. We had a fabulous launch and look forward to you registering with us. Our presentation will focus around a touching story of personal struggle and TRIUMPH. Kids 6-12 register early for $100 OFF and ask about our DISCOUNTS and payment plans. Stay tuned for more!

Never to be forgotten the Shades of I-She series rolls into Tobago this weekend 14th and 15th September, 2019

The Office of the Prime Minister (Gender and Child Affairs) in collaboration with the Member of Parliament for Tobago East (the Honourable Ayanna Webster-Roy) and the Member of Parliament for Tobago West (the Honourable Shamfa Cudjoe) invites you to RSVP and attend…….

This event will feature a play entitled ‘Shades of I-She: Every Woman’s Story’ (an Indigenous Creative Arts Network Production, written and directed by Eintou Pearl Springer which focuses on Gender Based Violence. These initiatives will allow for a different kind of dialogue and engagement on the topic of gender based violence utilizing the creative arts.

….Tobago Here We Come!



Kambule is in Carifesta now so come through and enjoy. See video under ….

‘Kambule’ will be showcased at Carifesta 2019 to be held in Trinidad between the 16th and 25th of August 2019. Kambule pays tribute to our warrior ancestors of the Mas and brings their achievements to the attention of the entire society. The Carnival that we now take for granted was fought for by the former enslaved of the barrack yards, not only in Port of Spain but also in the East and South of the island. The riots of 1881 in Port of Spain were however the most significant.

The play documents the victory of stick-fighters and ordinary Africans against the colonial administration who tried to stop the celebration of Carnival in 1881. The battle between the community and the soldiers is set against the backdrop of the barrack-yards of Port of Spain – poverty-stricken urban settlements inhabited by the poorer classes. Kambule gives context to the confrontation by chronicling relevant historical details and highlighting the relationships and conflicts that led to the creation of mas such as traditional characters, and the survival of Stickfighting, an African form of martial arts


We are pleased to invite you to a performance of Shades of I-She, a play by Eintou Pearl Springer addressing issues such as Gender-based violence through her poetry. Eintou will be accompanied on stage by Caribbean songstress Mavis John, singer Seeromani Maraj-Naraynsingh, musicians led by Marva Newton and other talented performers.

The play is being put on by the ngo, the Indigenous Creative Arts Network – ICAN, under the auspices of the Office of the Prime Minister, Gender and Child Affairs Division, as part of an alternative approach to solving problems within communities. ‘Shades’ first takes place on Saturday, June 29th, 4 pm at the Misir Community Centre, Morvant. It will then be held throughout Trinidad and Tobago. See proposed schedule ICAN_OPM Dates of Community Outreach on GBV through Culture and the Arts.

The community outreach is intended to stimulate discussion within affected families and motivate behaviour change using theatre arts as the vehicle for encouraging dialogue. The involvement of key stakeholders is also meant to facilitate greater coordination amongst agencies, and emphasise the relevance of creative solutions to societal problems.

February 1, 2020

Be a Part of the Zante Carnival Revolution

December 12, 2019

Zante Carnival Band Presentation 2020 – Inaru’s Gift

September 12, 2019

Shades of I-She Tobago Series

August 16, 2019

Kambule at Carifesta XIV

July 19, 2019

Idakeda brings Kambule to Carifesta 2019

June 28, 2019

Shades of I-She – Addressing Gender-based violence through the Arts