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Report From The Chair of Arts And Entertainment

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Arts & Entertainment Committee

 

Overview:

The Arts and Entertainment Committee had the responsibility of screening and processing artists and bands for the Caribana Festival.

Background:

  • The following were some of the challenges faced this years’ selection of bands and artists:
    • Contracts signed since February\March with bands and artist were not available to the board until July.
    • Budgets presented to the finance committee were not available to the board until a few weeks before the festival.
    • Several requests for a report from the entertainment committee were ignored.
    • The percentage of local artists hired by the CCC was reduced to less than ten percent this year.
    • Artists and bands from islands other than Trinidad and Tobago were not hired.
    • The budget was almost three times last years’ total.
    • Local artist staged a protest because they were under represented in the programming.

 

With a few weeks left before the festival I was given the task to rectify some of the above problem by:
1. Reducing the entertainment budget from over $200,000.
2. Including local artists in our program.
3. Including foreign artist form islands other than T & T.
4. Honoring the package deals that some bands and artists had already negotiated with CCC representatives during T & T 1994 carnival.

Advantages:

Our entertainment package included several local bands and artists. A talented young female MC was added to the Children Carnival line-up. Foreign bands and artists were added to the entertainment program. The budget was reduced from $214,000.00 to $179,000.00.

Disadvantages:

• There was no clear demarcation of authority and responsibility of directors and staff.
• The boards inability to function due to late lack of proper information, misinformation, or no information.
• The boards lack of courage to enforce its authority, and demand information that would help it to make intelligent decisions.
• Our functions were poorly advertised and we rely too much on the CCC’s name to sell tickets. Hence many people attended functions by other promoters believing they were CCC’s.
• Failure to take steps to increase the number of patrons at our events, which would increase our revenue.
• No in-depth analysis done on each event to determine what changes would increase attendance and revenue.
• Very little data collected to do any feasibility study before embarking on several projects.
• Lack of a process to plan, analyze, design and implement systems for the various events.

Recommendations:

The following recommendations are based on observations made during the 1994 and 1995 Caribana festival.

The CCC must establish criteria for the selections of bands and artists. We concentrate to heavily on one segment of the market and ignore the rest. Hence our functions draw far fewer people because our market share is limited.

CCC should use local musicians to backup all artists. This will put more money in the hands of our local musicians and reduce the cost.

We must control the market place, and negotiate for the largest ballrooms, the best bands and foreign artists. We should establish links with the local police, immigration, liquor board, and hotels to ensure we are in control of all activities during our celebration.

There is a need for a strong committee with representatives from steel band, musicians, calypso associations and CCC.

Conclusion:

Most of the dedicated people who serve on the various committees have given their time to build this organization. We must find a way to show our appreciation for their services, and to recognize their contribution for the task they have performed. It could cost the CCC a small fortune to assemble the talent and knowledge these people bring to the organization. It is imperative that they be given special consideration to our functions

Submitted by: V. Palmer
Chair of Arts & Entertainment Committee

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