The Queens Museum of Art Presents Carnival Panorama

The Queens Museum of Art, in partnership with El Museo del Barrio, Studio Museum in Harlem and cariBBeing, presents “Carnival Panorama: Families Celebrate Carnival Traditions” as part of the public programming for the current exhibition Caribbean: Crossroads of the World. These activities are free and open to the public. They will be held Saturday, September 22, 2012, from 3:00-8:00pm.

Description: Carnival Panorama will demonstrate centuries-old Caribbean traditions of Carnival in different areas of the region, with hands-on mas making by well-known costume designer Randy Brewster, Afro-Caribbean percussion workshops with Jose Obando, and interactive steel pan tutorials with CASYM. Don’t forget your dancing shoes as we “jump up” and take a musical journey around the majestic unisphere and through the islands with live performances by Request Band, RaRam, La Cumbiamba NY and more.

About the Artists:

CASYM is the acronym for the Caribbean American Sports and Cultural Youth Movement. Since its inception in 1983 as a non-profit organization, CASYM has provided academic, recreational, social and cultural activities for young people in Brooklyn. This professional orchestra has performed with jazz legend Lionel Hampton, the Harlem Boys choir, the Calypso King of the World -the Mighty Sparrow and Calypsonian David Rudder.

Request Band (“RQB”) blends their unique style of dynamic vocals and calypso and reggae/dancehall-inspired melodies with a fusion of the hottest island beats. RQB’s brand of soca sets them apart from their contemporaries because of their incredible ability to excite audiences with their electric and highly energetic performances. Their considerable talent and creativity is virtually unmatched. [. . .] With such hits as U Alone, De Boat Ride, J’ouvert, Hot Gyal Anthem, and Gimme Music, RQB has an ever-growing catalogue of original music with more music on the way.

Raram was established in Bel-Air, Port Au Prince, and Haiti in 1993 by Frantz Denis. Their mission was to spread love and unity social to the youths of Bel-Air. After time it was apparent their hypnotic harmonies were contagious as they paraded through CAFOU, PAP winning over young and older patrons. Raram proved they were more than meets the eye. Their evolution in sound and style inspired the younger generation. They were quickly labeled as one of the top bands in Haiti.

La Cumbiamba NY performs concerts and workshops with traditional instruments from both the Indigenous cultures and the European and African Diasporas as well as the mestizo/criolla culture of Colombia. All of which are blended together to create the traditional musical styles that developed throughout the colonial era and continue to evolve. Capturing the inclusive spirit of the outdoor parties, known as “cumbiambas.” The ensemble was founded by percussionist, arranger/composer Martin Vejarano.

The Afro-Caribbean Percussion Workshop includes a description of each instruments and musical movement by Jose Obando, Salsa Consultant, Musical Instruments Department of The Metropolitan Museum of Art & team. The program would also include two interactive segments: instrument distribution and a dancing lesson.

Randy Brewster is a well-known and popular costume designer. Join us for this hands-on mas-making workshop with master of this centuries old Carnival tradition.

Screening of Dalton Narine’s “Mas Man”: Mas Man is a featuring documentary exploring Peter Minshall’s leap from designer in the Trinidad Carnival to an artistic director of the Opening Ceremonies for three Olympic Games, based on his knack for “making what is small seem big in open space.”

[Photograph above by Ray Llanos.]

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