Trophies and cash prizes were presented to the winners in the Children’s Competitions which included performances in dance, dramatic poetry, calypso, costume and physical display; the junior and adult calypso competitions; the chutney competition; child art; bright-up Guyana; Pan-O-Rama competition; and the costume and float parade.
For the float and costume parade, the Region 3 contingent excelled in the medium and large bands and they also secured three of the four individual pieces. Consequently, designer Antonio Paul was crowed the Best Regional Designer. Meanwhile, designer Nelsion Nurse copped the Best Designer of the Year Award for his impressive creations. The other designers who were recognized were Pat Coates and David Grant, Carol Fraser, Jermaine Brooms, Trevor Alfred and the Burrows School of Arts.
Special awards were also presented to Banks DIH and Republic Bank for this indelible support of this year’s Mashramani 2017 celebrations.
In her reflections of this year’s celebrations, Minister within the Ministry of Education, Hon. Nicolette Henry indicated that she is particularly pleased and proud with the 1000 children and 3000 adults who participated in this year’s competition.
“This is testimony to the growing interest and patriotism we have as a people…this augurs well for strengthening the development of national pride which is fundamental to the whole issue of cultural identity,” she said.
The Mashramani 2017 celebrations featured fifteen (15) signature events. There were Flag Raising ceremonies in all ten administrative regions, float parades in New Amsterdam, Region 6, Linden, Region 10 and Georgetown; and a number of song competitions.
“All of these events had different effects on the Guyanese people…we noticed that some people reacted in positive ways while others provided suggestions on how to strengthen and enhance the celebrations as we move forward,” Minister Henry noted.
Consequently, the Minister highlighted those performances that impacted her positively. Those included performances by Ms. T’Shana Cort (winner of the Junior Calypso competition); Ms. Parmadai Willie (winner of the Chutney competition); the outstanding creations by Neilson Nurse and sizzling road march performance by Melissa ‘Vanilla’ Roberts.
“I believe it would be prudent to say that culture comes in many forms and we need to recognize that too…a song, a dance, a float – they can all in their different ways weave a spell that lifts you way beyond the hum-drum of life,” Minister Henry posited.
Going forward, the Minister emphasized that she looks forward to new ideas and renewed energy.