One of the major reasons that I have not been blogging as much is because I have been involved in a national theatrical production called Nation Dance: The Pilgrimage. It is being done by the Department of Creative and Festival Arts at the University of the West Indies. I am involved in the production because currently doing a course that makes up my minor in Theatre Arts, and as such I am required to be apart of it.
Nation Dance: The Pilgrimage focuses on one primary objective, that is to discover what it means to be Trinbagonian. It also incorporates a literal and figurative journey to discover a sense of nationhood and nation building. The production also takes a very close look at our social and political context of yesterday, today and the future.
Like the title says, we are on a pilgrimage and thus the show has been traveling to many places across Trinidad and Tobago. For each show we visit a different community that would share with us the values that they brought to this land. Each community has taken up the responsibility of dramatically representing their history and traditions that melds with the 1 hour production that we have created.
In this production there are four individuals that go by the name of pyong. Each one of them represent an ill of the society that is “Mauvais Langue”. After being accused and sent a way to discover their mother, who they say is the roots of the land, they set out on a journey to different communities in search of their mother. At each community they are set with real life challenges, that the pyongs have no idea what they would be. At our recent show in Waterloo, “Shooter Pyong” had to eat a red hot pepper with roti, in order to cleanse his body of beef, pork and other impurities to be accepted by the community that runs the Temple by the Sea. He of course, was sweating beads after he consumed it. These traditions presented by the communities show different values of Trinidad and Tobago, and in this quest to find what i really means, we would present them on our final shows at the Department of Creative and Festival Arts at the University of the West Indies.
PLEASE SAVE THE REMAINING DATES…. 8 shows… and 2 have already gone!
March 16 - Naparima Hill, San Fernando - 7 pm
March 18 - Temple in the Sea Grounds, Waterloo - 5 pm
March 23 - Desperadoes Steel Orchestra, Laventille - 7 pm
March 24 - Golden Lane, Tobago - 7 pm
March 25 - Pembroke Heritage Park, Tobago - 5 pm
March 30 - Calvary Hill, Arima - 7 pm
March 31 - DCFA, UWI - 7 pm
April 1 - DCFA, UWI - 5 pm
NO COST for performances March 16 - March 30.
The DCFA venue admission is Adults $50, UWI students/ NDATT MEMBERS $30, children $20
The role that I have in this production is the character Mamaguy. Mamaguy is considered the Big Fish of Mauvais Langue. He is without a doubt well aware of the happenings on all levels of the country. He is a thief, channeling money from the treasury through very close friends in the royal court. His hands are clean but is very well connected. Oddly enough Mamaguy enjoys dressing up as a woman. He prides himself because he looks sexy and enjoys the comfort that no one can tell him anything about it. He is the primary reason as to why Mauvais Langue is in a serious sense of despair.
Here are a few shots of the production at Naparima Hill where we visited the Warao community.