Trinidad and Tobago Uncrowned Queens Carnival Soca Blog 13thStreetPromo 13thStreetPromotions Caribbean Covid 19 Pandemic

“Uncrowned Queens” To Provide Entertainment During The Pandemic


Prime Minister of Trinidad and Tobago, Dr. Keith Rowley’s October 2020 announcement that, “Carnival in Trinidad and Tobago in 2021 is not on” has not stopped local artistes and Carnival stakeholders from keeping the culture and festivities of the season alive. Among them stands Warrior Empress, who, in collaboration with Music Mill Studios will present Uncrowned QUEENS – a virtual musical concert featuring some of Trinidad and Tobago’s most promising Female Calypsonians; this event will be live streamed via YouTube from 8PM (AST) on Friday 5th February 2021.

No stranger to the Calypso arena herself, Warrior Empress (whose birth name is Allison Bernard) has been singing professionally for the past fourteen (14) years. She sang out of the Kalypso Revue from 2015 to 2019, was finalist in The NWAC Calypso Queen Monarch Competition from 2010 to 2019 – placing 2nd on two (2) occasions 3rd on another, and was also the First  Reserve at The National Calypso Monarch Finals in 2019 with her own composition ‘The You in You.”

Showing her true warrior spirit, Bernard is not one to retreat when faced with challenges. In a statement to the media Bernard said she was inspired to produce this show “on the heels of one of the governing body for the Carnival stating that they would not be holding any [Carnival related] activities… not even virtually.” With three (3) successfully produced online events under her belt: With Women In Mind’ – a Mother’s Day Concert in May 2020, ‘Vocals and Steel’ – a Father’s Day Concert in June 2020, and ‘Rise Up’ – an Emancipation Concert in July 2020, in addition to an ongoing, online weekly talk show entitled “The Feminine Drive” Bernard saw this statement as an opportunity to innovate, and “keep the spirit of Carnival alive in a new way”.

Continue reading ““Uncrowned Queens” To Provide Entertainment During The Pandemic”

Jamaica Akiba Abaka Raw Management Agency 10 Weeks In Jamaica Theatre 13thStreetPromotions 13thStreetPromo Caribbean Oliver Samuels Fae Ellington Shebada Simone Harris Karl Williams Webster McDonald

Simone Harris, Karl Williams & Webster McDonald To Appear On @AkibaAbakaArts & Raw Management Agency’s Weekly Talk Series!


“10 Weeks In Jamaica: Theatre Conversations from Jamaica to the World!” is a lively series of weekly discussions  with Jamaica’s leading theatre artists exploring the histories and memories of–and visions for–the Jamaican stage. Produced by Boston-based international theatre production company Akiba Abaka Arts, in partnership with Kingston, Jamaica-based talent agency and production company RAW Management, the series aims to connect Jamaican theatre artists with a global platform of theatre makers looking to gain new knowledge, share best practices around progressive theatre-making, and engage members of the greater Caribbean Diaspora longing for familiar stories of home.

“10 Weeks in Jamaica” weekly conversations can be streamed live each Sunday at 4 PM; previous episodes of the series featuring Oliver Samuels O.D., Dr. Brian Heap, Dr. Deborah Hickling-Gordon, and Fae Ellington are available for on-demand viewing on the Akiba Abaka Arts YouTube page here.

   The next conversation on Sunday, December 20 at 4 PM is Queer NARRATIVES FROM THE JAMAICAN STAGE and brings together a mix of theater practitioners, academicians and playwrights with Jamaican backgrounds including: Karl Williams, an award-winning actor, director and playwright who serves as Deputy Chair of the Speech, Communications and Theatre Arts Department at Borough of the Borough of Manhattan Community College/City University of New York; Webster McDonald, a Jamaican theatre practitioner and educator who is currently a Ph.D. candidate in the Department of Theater and Dance at the University of Kansas; and Simone Harris, a Maroon activist, queer dance artist and business consultant. The conversation is moderated by Jamaican-American theater entrepreneur, actress and director Akiba Abaka.

Upcoming programs in the series include:

Sunday, December 27, 4PM EST

LEADERS OF A NEW STAGE

Speakers: Evone Walters, Andrew Barracks and Rayon McLean

Sunday, January 3, 4PM EST

AFRO-FUTURISM AND THE JAMAICAN STAGE

Speakers: Tanya Batson Savage and Michael Holgate

Check out previous episodes below, and share with a friend. Show us some love/follow us on Twitter and Instagram at @13thStreetPromo.

Continue reading “Simone Harris, Karl Williams & Webster McDonald To Appear On @AkibaAbakaArts & Raw Management Agency’s Weekly Talk Series!”

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.@DZLRecords Kicks Off Holiday Season With New Music From @Seanresy & @Scantana1


After starting off the 4th quarter with new music from Scantana and Saine, Kingston based DZL Records strikes again with more music in time for the holiday season. The pandemic hasn’t stopped the Dale “Dizzle” Virgo founded label from putting out good music, and with new releases from Scantana and Seanresy, listeners will be in for a bonus.

Having made waves with “Goodie Goodie” recently, Scantana gives listeners another track to close the year off with in the street anthem, “Money Mecca”. Teaming up with Dale Virgo again, Scantana showcases lyrical dominance here with witty lines and adds some fun to his new street single. “Money Mecca” was originally titled “Money Mekka (Money Maker)” according to artist, but he decided to play on words as he deejays about being on the hustle in the Island that has birthed so many hustlers. With lines like, “Mi up like 747 24/7, mi fi start hustle 8 but mi deh deh fore 7, get it fi three five me a sell it for 7, tilli money tally like AK4…”, Scantana’s title as “Di man wid di most Grammar” is immediately confirmed as his skillset has been proven to be unmatched. “Money Mecca” is the 2nd single off Scantana’s “4WD (4 Work Days) EP” which is slated to be released in early 2021. Born Kibwe Lawrence in Central Kingston’s ”Tel Aviv” area, Scantana is a Rapper, Motivational Speaker, Actor, and Screenplay Writer. He found a love for music at an early age, wrote his first song at the age of 12, and went on to make a name for himself in New York’s South Bronx neighbourhood, and in Jamaica. He has shared the stage with the likes of Ma$e, Foxy Brown, SWV, and many others, and has collaborated with the likes of Anthony Red Roze, PseudoKhule, Serani, and Bugle.

Following Scantana is Seanresy with his latest single, “Fly Away”. Produced by Dale Virgo, Seanresy shares his need of wanting to get away from many things and situations that have been holding him and many others back. Not only does he reflect on his past experiences with poverty and those who have tried to hinder his growth and success, he shows that he is determined to not let them get in the way of him becoming a great man. The song finds him not only deejaying but singing on the chorus, and listeners will instantly connect with him and relate to the lyrics. Seanresy hopes that listeners will find some motivation in “Fly Away”, and help to propel the song to various parts of the globe. Born Shawn Baccas in Penwood Estate in Kingston, music found Seanresy’s interest from an early age. Mentored by the late King Tubby, Seanresy has been blessing the world with great releases like “Bridges”, “Join Hands”, and “Preach War”.

Scantana’s “Money Mecca” and Seanresy’s “Fly Away” is now available on all digital music streaming platforms through DZL Records. For updates on upcoming releases and more, visit DZLRecords.com, and follow the label on Twitter and Facebook at @DZLRecords, and on Instagram at @DZLRecords876.

Check out the tracks below, and share with a friend. Show us some love/follow us on Twitter and Instagram at @13thStreetPromo.

Continue reading “.@DZLRecords Kicks Off Holiday Season With New Music From @Seanresy & @Scantana1”

Jamaica Akiba Abaka Raw Management Agency 10 Weeks In Jamaica Theatre 13thStreetPromotions 13thStreetPromo Caribbean Oliver Samuels Fae Ellington Shebada Simone Harris Karl Williams Webster McDonald

Orville “Xpressionz”, Neila Ebanks & More To Appear On @AkibaAbakaArts & Raw Management Agency’s Weekly Talk Series!


“10 Weeks In Jamaica: Theatre Conversations from Jamaica to the World!” is a lively series of weekly discussions  with Jamaica’s leading theatre artists exploring the histories and memories of–and visions for–the Jamaican stage. Produced by Boston-based international theatre production company Akiba Abaka Arts, in partnership with Kingston, Jamaica-based talent agency and production company RAW Management, the series aims to connect Jamaican theatre artists with a global platform of theatre makers looking to gain new knowledge, share best practices around progressive theatre-making, and engage members of the greater Caribbean Diaspora longing for familiar stories of home.

“10 Weeks in Jamaica” weekly conversations can be streamed live each Sunday at 4 PM; previous episodes of the series featuring Oliver Samuels O.D., Dr. Brian Heap, Dr. Deborah Hickling-Gordon, and Fae Ellington are available for on-demand viewing on the Akiba Abaka Arts YouTube page here.

The next conversation on Sunday, November 29 at 4 PM is titled Dancehall Reggae and the Nettleford Effect.  The sounds and movements of Dancehall Reggae music scores the landscape of Jamaica’s cultural identity. Rooted in the Afro-Jamaican Kumina and Mento traditions, this form of popular music is among the country’s largest exports. The Honorable Rex Nettleford, OM, FIJ, OCC – a Jamaican scholar and choreographer, and co-founder of the National Dance Theatre Company of Jamaica – shared philosophies on the importance of contemporary Jamaican music and its linkage to pre-colonial African societies. He expressed these philosophies through dance theatre and a rigorous support for the arts in academia, as well as in the shaping of Jamaica’s national identity.

 Sunday’s conversation brings together three beneficiaries of Nettleford’s legacy for a conversation on how Dancehall Reggae shows up on the Jamaican stage: Orville “Xpressionz” Hall, artistic director for Theatre Xpressionz and chief judge for Jamaica’s number one dance program “Dancing Dynamite”; Marlon D. Simms, Dean of the School of Dance and Artistic Director for the National Dance Theatre Company of Jamaica; and Neila Ebanks, a dancer, choreographer and educator considered one of the Caribbean’s most innovative performing artists. The conversation is moderated by Jamaican-American theater entrepreneur, actress and director Akiba Abaka.

Upcoming programs in the series include:

Sunday, December 6, 4PM EST

JAMAICAN PLAYWRIGHTS ANSWER GEORGE BERNARD SHAW (PART 1)

Speakers: David Tulloch and Fabian Thomas

Sunday, December 13, 4PM EST

JAMAICAN PLAYWRIGHTS ANSWER GEORGE BERNARD SHAW (PART 2)

Speakers: Dahlia Harris and Amba Chevannes

Sunday, December 20, 4PM EST

QUEER NARRATIVES FROM THE JAMAICAN STAGE

Speakers: Karl Williams and Webster McDonald

Sunday, December 27, 4PM EST

LEADERS OF A NEW STAGE

Speakers: Evone Walters, Andrew Barracks and Rayon McLean

Sunday, January 3, 4PM EST

AFRO-FUTURISM AND THE JAMAICAN STAGE

Speakers: Tanya Batson Savage and Michael Holgate

Check out previous episodes below, and share with a friend. Show us some love/follow us on Twitter and Instagram at @13thStreetPromo.

Continue reading “Orville “Xpressionz”, Neila Ebanks & More To Appear On @AkibaAbakaArts & Raw Management Agency’s Weekly Talk Series!”

Trinidad and Tobago Theatre The Farewell That Kills T&T 13thStreetPromotions 13thStreetPromo Caribbean T&T Performing Arts Network

Caribbean Theatrical Production Streams Online


Shared in conjunction with T&T Performing Arts Network

The current global pandemic has had a crippling effect on theatre and live performances around the world. In an effort to adapt to the new normal, theatre practitioners have been going digital – producing and repurposing their performances for virtual streaming platforms. Not to be left behind is S.H.A.P.E. Up Production – a Tobago based drama youth group out of Signal Hill Secondary School, whose 2020 production ‘The Farewell that Kills will be available for digital viewing from November 27th – December 27th, exclusively on Caribbean Cyberstream.

The Farewell that Kills, written and directed by Garnet Lawrence, is a stinging reflection of current social issues using Traditional Carnival characters as the medium. Through a series of vignettes: a mixture of monologues, spoken word and dance where real life people are juxtaposed with traditional Carnival characters, each scene focuses on a different yet relevant social issue – from the brutal murder/suicides arising out of domestic violence, to perceptions of inequality by the public towards the Police in shutting down COVID parties.

In a statement to the media, Lawrence said the drama group – which performed Tobago’s feature presentation for the 9th Biennial Caribbean Secondary Schools’ Drama Festival, has been producing plays since 2016 specifically for Tobago students to critique as part of their CXC requirements. He lamented, “[Before then] we didn’t have theatre in Tobago that students can critique, and they may not always be able to afford to go to Trinidad. 

When asked what inspired him to still produce work in spite of all the obstacles facing the creative sector due to COVID-19, Lawrence said the answer is twofold. 

He said, “My rationale was that during this time, not only Tobago, but rather the wider Caribbean will be experiencing a lack of theatrical productions. I wanted to create something that is entertaining, thought provoking, and that students can effectively review for their CXC Theatre Arts play critique component. This is why I have avoided the Zoom platform style and did not pre record as individual scenes but rather filmed it as a full run…as one continuous flowing production.

Trinidad and Tobago Theatre The Farewell That Kills T&T 13thStreetPromotions 13thStreetPromo Caribbean T&T Performing Arts Network
Kayla George on set during promotional photography for ‘The Farewell that Kills | Photo credit: Triston Wallace.

Continue reading “Caribbean Theatrical Production Streams Online”

Jamaica Akiba Abaka Raw Management Agency 10 Weeks In Jamaica Theatre 13thStreetPromotions 13thStreetPromo Caribbean Oliver Samuels Fae Ellington Shebada Simone Harris Karl Williams Webster McDonald

Glen “Titus” Campbell & More To Appear On @AkibaAbakaArts & Raw Management Agency’s Weekly Talk Series!


“10 Weeks In Jamaica: Theatre Conversations from Jamaica to the World!” is a lively series of weekly discussions  with Jamaica’s leading theatre artists exploring the histories and memories of–and visions for–the Jamaican stage. Produced by Boston-based international theatre production company Akiba Abaka Arts, in partnership with Kingston, Jamaica-based talent agency and production company RAW Management, the series aims to connect Jamaican theatre artists with a global platform of theatre makers looking to gain new knowledge, share best practices around progressive theatre-making, and engage members of the greater Caribbean Diaspora longing for familiar stories of home.

“10 Weeks in Jamaica” weekly conversations can be streamed live each Sunday at 4 PM; previous episodes of the series featuring Oliver Samuels O.D., Dr. Brian Heap, Dr. Deborah Hickling-Gordon, and Fae Ellington are available for on-demand viewing on the Akiba Abaka Arts YouTube page here.

Each week the series explores a different theme based on the history of Jamaican theatre, and contemporary narratives presented on the Jamaican stage. The next conversation on Sunday, November 22 at 4 PM titled THE BUSINESS OF THE JAMAICAN STAGE (JAMBIZ) features Lenford Salmon, Company Director for Jambiz International Ltd. and national adjudicator for the Jamaica Cultural Development Commission Speech and Drama competitions; Glen “Titus” Campbell, renowned international actor who became a household name among Jamaicans for his show, “Titus in Town”; Boston-based actor, director and educator Magalie Neff; and Andrew Roach, founder and director of The Jamaican Shopping Club. The conversation is moderated by Jamaican-American theater entrepreneur, actress and director Akiba Abaka.

Upcoming programs in the series include:

Sunday, November 29, 4PM EST

DANCEHALL REGGAE AND THE NETTLEFORD EFFECT

Speakers: Orville Hall, Marlon Simms and Neila Ebanks

Sunday, December 6, 4PM EST

JAMAICAN PLAYWRIGHTS ANSWER GEORGE BERNARD SHAW (PART 1)

Speakers: David Tulloch and Fabian Thomas

Sunday, December 13, 4PM EST

JAMAICAN PLAYWRIGHTS ANSWER GEORGE BERNARD SHAW (PART 2)

Speakers: Dahlia Harris and Amba Chevannes

Sunday, December 20, 4PM EST

QUEER NARRATIVES FROM THE JAMAICAN STAGE

Speakers: Karl Williams and Webster McDonald

Sunday, December 27, 4PM EST

LEADERS OF A NEW STAGE

Speakers: Evone Walters, Andrew Barracks and Rayon McLean

Sunday, January 3, 4PM EST

AFRO-FUTURISM AND THE JAMAICAN STAGE

Speakers: Tanya Batson Savage and Michael Holgate

Check out previous episodes below, and share with a friend. Show us some love/follow us on Twitter and Instagram at @13thStreetPromo.

Continue reading “Glen “Titus” Campbell & More To Appear On @AkibaAbakaArts & Raw Management Agency’s Weekly Talk Series!”