Group Title: CARIFESTA Newspaper Clippings
Title: Five 'faults' of CARIFESTA
Full Citation
Permanent Link:
 Material Information
Title: Five 'faults' of CARIFESTA
Series Title: CARIFESTA Newspaper Clippings
Physical Description: Book
Publisher: Sunday Chronicle
Publication Date: 9/24/1972
Subject: Carifesta (1st : 1972 : Guyana), Festivals - Caribbean Area
Caribbean   ( lcsh )
Spatial Coverage: South America -- Guyana -- Georgetown
Funding: Support for the development of the technical infrastructure and partner training provided by the United States Department of Education TICFIA program.
 Record Information
Bibliographic ID: CA00199628
Volume ID: VID00001
Source Institution: Caribbean Community (CARICOM) Secretariat
Holding Location: Caribbean Community (CARICOM) Secretariat
Rights Management: All rights reserved by the source institution and holding location.
Resource Identifier: CARIFESTA I 1972

Full Text

There are five main areas in which criticisms have been levelled
at the organisation of CARIFESTA and in each area the carpers and
fault-finders use contradictory material. They are -
(1) the lack of Indian participation;
(2) the success of a boycott by a group of Indian organizations,
antagonistic over the Government's use of certain funds in
the erection of the Cultural Centre;
(3) the paucity of Amerindian participation;
(4) the emphasis which participating countries laid upon African
elements of culture at the request of the Guyana Government;
(5) the abuse of UNESCO's assistance for CARIFESTA.
In this article, Carifesta Commissioner FRANK PILGRIM
considers these and other criticisms. He says:

The five

of Caril
CARIFESTA has come and
gone, and yesterday's doubt .
ing Thomases who were pre-
paed to bet their last dollar
that CARIFESTA would be
a TCarifiasco are admitting
t It it was a resounding suc-
iBut in their role of the '
p essional fault finders
ty have turned jaundiced
es on everything connected
hCARIFESTA, trying to
fid sinister motives !or the -
fl vs that undoubtedly ex-
In doing this the fault- .
finders (I hesitate to call .:
tliem critics) frequently con- L
tradict themselves. For ex- FRANK PIL
ample, they proclaim the
success of a boycott by the nation in every
Indian community and, at CARIFESTA is
the same time, blame the ten.
CARIFESTA authorities for A boycott was
n4t having had-greater In- some Indian g
dian participation. when this was
S. effective, Indiar
openings and entertainers
ejected to, threats
"Let us look at this Indian violence and
position more closely, several instances
iThe CARIFESTA organis- violence against
ers and the Government are was not done by
today being accused of not ment or by CAR
having taken the Indian con- was not support
tribution to our national cul- the reputable In
ture seriously. The fact that stations but it el
Guyana's Gora Singh was was a deterrent
brought back from India in Mention has b
order to organise Indian par- the fact that son
ticipation is conveniently ig- dian stage item
nored. formed by more
The fact that there were than Indians. T
openings for Indian partici but does this not



s cal
ed by
to so
ne of
1s W(


sincerity of the CARIFES
TA's desire to present In-
b dian culture?
If we had wanted to-init
the Indian items it would
have been the simplest thing
in the world for us to have
said "Well, the Indians are
not coming forward, so there
will be no Indian lcontribu-
tions." A
-. But even with* 100%
Indian participation we were
able to hold two minplete
I evenings of Indian Music
and Dance at the Cultural
Centre and at the National
Park, and the standard was
better and more entertaining
M that has ever been done by
Guyanese before.
ere of
forgot- Festival
led by The same fault-finders
Is and, complain about the paucity
ng in- of the Indian contributions
musicians from participating countries,
re sub- It is obvious, they say, that
physical the CARIFESTA authorities
were discouraged these countries
actual from sending Indian items.
m. This There are only two coun-
Govern- tries other than Guyana
TA and which could have had major
any of Indian participation: Trini-
organi- dad & Tobago and urinam.
1 and it From the outset the CARI-
me. FESTA Secretariat had re,
nade of quested Hindu and Muslim
the In- representation on a large
ere Ip scale from both these coun-
-Indians tries. From Trinidad we had
enoh, ee page 8
irm the see page 8

soht to have the National
Indian Orchestra and Dane-
er and there have
been a special represeta-
tion of the Husein FestivaL
In the end, neither of mese
groups could come to Guy-
ana because of other over-
seas comnitmenta by them.
Surinam's Hindustani con-
tributions were considerable,
but were perhaps dwarfed by
the magnitude 'of Guyana-s
b en representations, which
involved,280 dancers, singers
and musicians.
Our fault-inders now go
further afield and come up
with he. anard that the
Amerindians were not repre-
sented sufficiently. Earlier,
the fault-finders complained
that the Ameriniian group
performing im "All Kinos of
Folk" had been permitted to
go on too long.
Recognition of the signifi-
cant part played by the Am-
erindian elements in the
cultural deveploment of the
Caribbean region as one of
the predominant themes of
the Opening Ceremony which
highlighted the great Amer-
indian civilisations of an-
cient times. This recogni-
tion was also prominent in
the "Pagent of the People".
There could certainly have
mmote Amerindian participa-
tion in our shows but
even the quantum that did ap-
pear was more than has
ever been presented in
Georgetown before CARI-
FESTA. It is not as if there
was a great Amerindian
theatrical or folk movement
already known to Guyanese
which had been deliberately
withheld from OARIFESTA
Fault-finders also snea
something sinister in the
absence of Amerindian con-
tributions from other parti-
cipating countries.
The country with the most
significant and powerful
Amerindian community to-
day is Mexico. That country
was invited to CAIFESTA
and accepted the invitation
but, also 10 days before
CARIFESTA, cabled its re.
gret at being unable to take
Belize was another toun-

that they are on to a "good
if thing" wonder whether we
cannot be accused of having
abused UNESCO's assistance
( but UNESCO's assisance,
from page 6 whih a e to be
available for participating
try with the posasity of countries, was not assured
presenting major Amerin. Until it was too late for
dian display, but then trans some countries to take ad-
portation proved to be too vantage of the offer. (Belize
eupensve, an undertkingu was one of such countries)
for the governme to take The whole question of UN.
on at ths time. ESCO's assistance to CARI-
Sa tiiFESTA has been eaggerat.
Sur ise ed by the Press. The Guyana
SGovernment received $10,000
The "critics" wonder why (U. 8.) WHICH WAS' TO
Cuha (whose Poulation BE USED ONLY FOR
group is known to more EQUIPPING THE STAGE
white than African) could OF THE Cultural Centre -
send a folklorique group that a very small fraction of the
was African. actual ot.
hy wonder wy B l The participating countries
ey wonder why Brzil as far as is known, were in-
sent Vva Bahia, another formed that $15,000 (U. S.)
African group. had been made available to
There was no compulsion, the British dependent terri-
nor was there any ersua- stories by the British Coma
sion from the CARIFESTA mission f UNESCO, but
authorities or the Guyana to the time of CARIFESTAu
Government, with regard to itself none of the territories
either of these countries, knew how this $15,000 would
Cuba's Conjunto NFoliori- be divided.
co Nacionale has just conclu- The French territories
ded a major tour of Euope nothing, as we have no infor-
and North Africa and is un- nation of any of the inds
doubtedly one of the most pendent countries being
outstanding such groups in given special assistance from
the Caribbean. It should be UNESCO for partidating
no surprise that this would in CAR.ESA.
be the groMup selected to
come, especially since it is CARIFESTA '72 was a
well known that the Afro- success in pite of the OI-
Cuban contribution to Cuban fects of those who tried to
culture is a predominant undermine it
one. It will remain a success
It is true that Cuba also in spite of the effects of the
has a major classical ballet fault-inders to detract its
company but this would success
hardly 'be the group they CARIFESTA '72 was a suc-
would send to 4Caribbean cess in spite of the effects of
Festmal of Creative Arts those who tried to undermine

The Brazilans themselves
in all of their publications
boast of the virility of the
surviving African culture in
Bahia and the fact that this
is one of the major contri-
butions to the developing
Brazilian natural culture
and it was again no surprise
that this group. fom ah
was selected to come n pre-
ference to a group like the
excellent German Brase
Band from southern Brazil.
Our fault-inders, feeling

It will remain a success in
spite of the effects of the fault-
finders to detract from its


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