Group Title: CARIFESTA Newspaper Clippings
Title: Festival of Creative Arts of the Caribbean : CARIFESTA '72
Full Citation
Permanent Link:
 Material Information
Title: Festival of Creative Arts of the Caribbean : CARIFESTA '72
Series Title: CARIFESTA Newspaper Clippings
Physical Description: Book
Creator: Brathwaite, Edward Kamau
Publisher: Advocate-News
Publication Date: 10/16/1972
Subject: Carifesta (1st : 1972 : Guyana), Festivals - Caribbean Area
Caribbean   ( lcsh )
Spatial Coverage: North America -- Barbados -- Bridgetown
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: CA00199874
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

Festival of -Creative

Arts oThe Caribbean

THE slave masters were
absent. There were no whips
at Carifesta. No foreign ma-
gistrates of taste or art. No
missionaries Or sergeant-
majors. No one had to shoe.
shine-boy, shimmy or show
his teeth at the sun over his
shoulder. There were no
.Euro-American camera crews
no dotty anthropologists tak-
ing notes.
Sam Selvon, Trinidad nov-
elist and (with Sparrow) our
greatest balladeer, summed
it up when he told an observ-
ing journalist who, for a mo-
ment, had forgotten his scheme
in the place of things at a
literary meeting: "Look man,
t.' doan matter how we do
things here; is our thing and
we going' do it our way, un-
Three weeks (AUgust 25-
ep member 15;( 22 proiea
of 'the circumnambient Carib.
bea4; 4,000 artists; audiences
of 10,000 every bighl; child-
ren everywhere .
Carifesta ;was Emancipa-
tion Day come true; collective
Declaration of Independence;
figst ever meeting of the ar-
Ibbean people. .
In- a very re. '
Festival of Creative ,A, s-'6f
the Caribbean could only lUv
been conceived and thoughtt
to birth in Guyana., Where
else in the Caribbeani would
you find a practical inpre-
dictable talents of Wilson Har-
ris, Elsa CGoveia, Aibrey' W11-
liams, Philip Moore, Martin
Carter to name only a
few of the country's artist
intellectuals ?
Where else would you find
that mixture of dream andi
violence which is the reality
of Guyanese politics? Where
else such sophisticated, sim-
SThose white wooden space
crafts of houses' are no, aEcci
dent. Where else, I w'tnder.
cQuld you discuss the mystic'
life of Jesus with a- taxi-
Oriver, negotiating a cavalry
of pot-holes?
SIn May 1966, in celebratfons
marking Guyana's attain-,
ment of Independence, Prime
iMinister Forbes turnham in.
vited a handful of English-
speaking Caribbean writers
,and artists to Guyana. In
:February 1970, to witness the
inauguration of the Coopera-
tive Republic, Comrade Burn-
ham and his Cabinet did not
invite plentlpotentaries and
powers (dukes, diplomats, da.
ta collectors).
They called again upon the
artists: spokesman of vision.
And on both occasions the
possibility and the need
for a full-scale festival of the
arts in the Cnribbean was dis-
cussed. Finally in the heart
of 1972, it happened.
A secretariat was set Up
in Georgetown with two ex-
perienced Guyenese artist
administrators in charge: Ly-
nette Dolphin (Direltor),
Frunk Pilgrim (comnlisskioner)
They were given a snial-
scale full-time staff, with in-
finite capacity ror the work_
Irig out of deitall, and unitn-
ag'Il1l,- finafiRial backing
fr th nlplhninll In 1. th

7 4

.. and subsistence weri'eprovided
SfOr all Carifesta artists while
in Guyana)., I ,

enjoy, and ,partoipat stayed
Sin hotels, .gust ,houses, with
Sb friends)) a. .wble new settle-
6 nent of 250 greenheart
MR, BUi NHAM b SAMUEL SELVON houses on stilt two bed-
'. rooms, 'bath; .kltchoePtte and
ittirig room 4s, eo tab-.
tune, e ay .i$7 mtu- Ifesta. in: Kiagstaf F9taur itig rooh m i the ~ Soode part
iion,' P i SPrince, parigetown- "cnr em eo t the on juienooro and
'lios. e Prince,rgeo awnd .- of the -cityt just beyond the
ham himself ad insisted fro Finally it was decided that cemetery on ien
the beginning, this festival the artists going to Guyana This was Festival City with
was not to confine itself to 'would be divided into two its flags, security guard (you
the barrier reefs of the Eng- i han categories: individual needed a pass .,or Carfesta
lish-speaking Caribbean, Cu- artists and government dele- ID card to get in), at'ge din-
ba, Haiti, Dominican Repub- nations. These latter, financed ing room with foodavallable.
lic, Puerto Rico, Surinam, b$ the participating countries round the clock, juke.or band
were immediately involved; th mselives, would ibe a large, rocking round the lock, post
as well as Arub's les antilles spectacular group (some up office, health centle@ shops.
franchises, Belize and the to f60 strong): dance theatre
Bahamas. companies, dramatic ensem- This was where the various
When Brazil and Venezuela, bks, choirs, and musical ag- delegations 1 Lv ed: Bqrbacos
landlying neighbours of Guy- gregations suc h as Cuba's next to' Cuba on Nutmeg
ana also expressed interest, O'questa Aragon and the Street; Jamaica, French Guy.
the horizons widened drama- M tic Revelation of Rasta- ana on Flying.Fish Avenue,.
tically. Mexico, Peru, Chile. fa7i from Jamaica. After the 'festival, theso
'rom the Secretariat tilto same houses will be made
this Greater Caribbean, then, Individual 'artists, mainly evailnble to the public: good
came an endless stream of wt'iters, and headed by Louise quality low-cost housing:
invitation, explanation, exhqr- Binnett, the Jamaitoan poet dream and ,praxls. But during
station. Teams representing ad folklorist, would be the Carifesta, it was 'home';. it
various aspects of: the festi- guests of, Guyana: return was, as .Sandra Sealy ofiBar.
val began to visit participat- aii-fare, accommodation and bados put it, 'where we're'
ing countries. Frankr Pilgrim G1YY $7.00 per day stibsis- cognized that 'we had a con-
was heard talking about Car-. thce (Ih fact, accomnuodation man, uniting, culture.'

Carnfes' ~Y

By Edward Kaitmau

arathw iko

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