Special tribute planned for Richard Stoute
Members of the entertainment fraternity, along with funeral director James Wilson, will be honouring the man they affectionately refer to as the ‘Godfather’ of entertainment – Richard Stoute – at a show entitled, Stars of Teen Talent – Tribute to Richard Stoute.
It is slated for the Garfield Sobers Gymnasium on May 27 at 7 p.m.
At a media briefing held at Radisson Aquatica Resort Barbados on Wednesday, Wilson, of Downes and Wilson Funeral Home – the main sponsor of the event – said that it was his way of giving back to Stoute for all he had done for the entertainment industry in Barbados for the past 60 years.
“We were trying to figure out what we are going to do for 2018 [in relation to the calendars] and I said, ‘Aha, Richard Stoute!’ And we spoke to Richard and asked him about being on our cover and he said, ‘yes’. I said [to Richard], ‘what about including some of the other artistes who have performed in the [teen talent] competition over the years?’ He sent me a list of about ten people and we contacted them to put them on the calendar and we wrote letters to them and then a few weeks later I thought, ‘Maybe we should do a give back. We should ask the artistes if they could give back their time and talent and do a show in honour of Richard Stoute,’” Wilson said in explaining how the idea for the show came about.
Speaking on behalf of the artistes that would have come under Stoute’s wings in Teen Talent over the years, Anderson Mr Blood Armstrong credited Stoute with instilling values into all persons who entered the competition over its 42 years of existence.
“I want to say thanks first and foremost to the ‘Godfather’ of entertainment. It is because of your vision that many of us in the entertainment industry can say that we had the start to realize our dreams as stars,” Armstrong said in acknowledgement of Stoute’s contribution to Barbados.
“He worked tirelessly with the young and gifted for 42 years and continues to give of his time, his energy and of his self. We have seen him change the teen talent and sometimes seen the struggles to keep the teen talent. He pushed us to be better at what we do and to be better human beings. It was not just coming and singing. He’s always teaching and guiding and instilling proper values in you and at this time I want to say, ‘thank you’ to the people who decided to do this while we still have the opportunity Mr Stoute to say, ‘thank you’ to your face,” Armstrong said.
In response, Stoute said that he was pleased that Wilson had decided to pay tribute to him while he was alive.
“It is [traditional] for us to have these compliments when we are in boxes, but I thank God for you and all the persons involved who basically came together to do this thing for me,” a grateful Stoute said.
He was sad, however, that his son Ryan Stoute had died before his dream of seeing his father honoured by all past and current Teen Talent contestants could come to fruition.
“I am just sorry that my late son Ryan Stoute is not here to see this. One of the last things Ryan said to me before he departed this life is that he would like to see this happen – for all the people who came through teen talent to come back and put on a show for me. I know he is not here in body, but I know Ryan is here,” he added.
Stoute also said it was significant that the event was being held at Radisson Aquatica, formerly the Holiday Inn, where he was entertainment manager some 41 years ago.
“ Right here, I was the entertainment manager at Holiday Inn when I started Teen Talent. This is where the stage was and people sat down there. This a very special that this is happening here today and I know that God is here in our city,” Stoute said.