Calypso Assc. and CPMA aim to improve the Calypso product

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The Saint Lucia Calypso Association (2009) and the Carnival Planning and Management Agency (CPMA) have united forces to ensure that the 2014 Carnival Season realizes a much improved Calypso product. The two parties met yesterday, April 22nd, at the Ministry of Tourism, Heritage and Creative Industries, to discuss several issues which have affected the hosting of Tents, national events and other areas relating to the development of Calypso. One key element in the way forward is a Memorandum of Understanding between the two entities which is expected to clearly articulate the role of each organization and create a better working relationship.Drafts are to be discussed in the next few days and the final document is to be adopted by the second week in May 2014. Chairman of the SLCA (2009), David Jordan, applauded the Ministry of Tourism, Heritage and Creative Industries and the CPMA for facilitating such an important meeting and is confident that the pooling of forces in such a systematic and professional manner augurs well for the future of Calypso.

According to Mr Jordan, the SLCA (2009) executive and members are seeking to remove the barriers to progress in Calypso and the first priority is an improved working relationship with the Government appointed management body. Chairman of the CPMA, Lyndon Arnold, reiterated the need for Carnival stakeholders to play an active role in the execution of all related activities and highlighted the importance of transparency and accountability especially as it relates to the use of Government funds in this difficult economic climate.

He pledged his organization’s support for well organized and approved activities, and requested that Carnival interest groups not paint his newly appointed team with the same brush of resentment as its predecessors.

Director of Carnival, Teddy Francis, was thankful that the parties could make the time to participate in such an amiable level of discourse and was optimistic that the challenges of the past would remain as such. He emphasized the need to be professional in all aspects of planning and production and advised that legal implications be considered at every juncture.

The meeting was chaired by the Permanent Secretary in the Ministry of Tourism, Heritage and Creative Industries, Donovan Williams, who also expressed satisfaction with the outcome of the meeting and encouraged all parties to collaborate and utilize communication and diplomacy to achieve objectives and deal with matters of concern. Williams advertised his Ministry’s open door policy and invited the SLCA(2009) to submit developmental project proposals which would assist in the . Tent leaders, writers and executive members of the SLCA(2009) were thankful that such an initiative was finally achieved and are all optimistic that the 2014 Calypso season will breathe new life into the art-form

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