by Emmanuel Joseph
With the pressure of competition behind them, the two victors of this year’s Scotiabank Junior Calypso Monarch Competition went into a more relaxed mode today as they soaked in their achievements and looked to the future.
For Jazz Jazz-Z Gittens, the 8 to 12 ‘king’ spent the day today at summer camp, but his dad, Roger Gittens, who writes and arranges the boy’s songs, told Barbados TODAY, there were plans to have a “get together” with friends and family to celebrate Jazz-Z’s win.
Being on top is nothing new to this 11 year old active sportsman. He is the outgoing head boy at the Hilda Skeene Primary School, where he sang in the choir and represented the institution in football, cricket and athletics. He was the leading goal scorer in the school’s football team, which topped its zone.
As a leading young sports person, it was quite appropriate that he won the Junior Calypso Monarchy with Cricket, a selection written and arranged by his father.
Dressed in the colours of the West Indies cricket team, Jazz-Z’s well-controlled and confident rendition, told the story of a Japanese tourist who went to Kensington Oval to watch the West Indies play. However, due to his lack of understanding of the sport, he ran across the field naked, believing such an adventure was all part of the game.
His performance, which featured a “white man” literally running across the stage wearing only an under garment, was entertaining. The music was applicable, in that the kaiso was fused with elements of Oriental music. For his victory, Jazz-Z is now $1,500 richer, with a laptop computer and trophy to accompany the cash.
Notwithstanding the fact that money always filled a material need, the computer will be of tremendous assistance to Jazz-Z, who would be attending the Christ Church Foundation School in September.
As he looks forward to defending his crown and being in the younger juniors’ category for the final time next year, his passion for sports would also most likely continue through secondary school.
Aisha Mandisa Butcher, the new monarch among the “older juniors” said she was not planning anything special today to celebrate her “ascension to the throne”.
The former student of the Alleyne School, however informed this newspaper that she intended to join a calypso tent next year, but had not yet decided which one. She will be 19 years old next year, and will therefore not qualify to return to the Junior Monarch contest.
Her winning calypso, My Advice, conveyed a powerful and penetrating message with an added dimension that made it seemed personal. Everything about the song was so aptly interpreted, that one felt as though Mandisa was singing about her own experience. However, she was not. Even the title of the song was appropriate and personal.
As she moved across the stage and made contact with her audience, she related the sad story of a child who grew up too fast, lived too fast, made partying her number one priority but education number three. The lyrical content noted that her parents appeared surprised when she became