A massive cast comprised of close to forty performers feted veteran entertainer Richard Stoute in song on Sunday night. This edition of the celebratory Capricorn Affair was hosted at the Walled Theatre of the Barbados Museum.
The more than four-hour long production was a talent-laden showcase featuring some of the current participants in his developmental programme, many experienced singers who have benefitted from his expertise and some who worked closely with him throughout his career.
Always known for his keen sense of fashion, Stoute who wore a black and yellow Spanish styled suit, with a striking pair of white shoes, acted as master of ceremonies. The man of the hour shared the stage with several of his proteges. He was joined by Laverne Smith for a rendition of Nat King Cole’s Unforgettable and then by Rashida Codrington with Somewhere Over the Rainbow.
The first half was dominated by those excelling in the recent season of the Richard Stoute Teen Talent Competition. Winner in the 6-12 category Tykairi Sergeant rendered Speak the Name while Diandrea Harris, who took top honours in her division, sang Beautiful and Unspoilt. Among those appearing in this segment were Kiah Shurland, Weslon Samuel, Kayla Alleyne, Tavon Boyce and Kereesa Chase.
Reigning Junior Monarch Shontae Alleyne- Clarke was outstanding with a melody in tribute to the late Jackie Opel. The former winner of the competition continues to mature as an artiste, and she was quite impressive with her delivery of Opel’s Cry Me a River and You Got to Pay.
The second half featured the more seasoned performers. Several soca artistes chose to don different hats on the night. Malik opened with the ballad Second Chance while Mr Blood impressed with his retro presentation. He started with the classic Can’t Help Falling in Love and then expertly transitioned to reggae favourites John Holt’s Dr Love and Ernie Smith’s Pitta Patta. The Mighty Gabby also opted to show his range with Unchained Melody.
Attendees enjoyed a moment of nostalgia with Sharron Darlington. The experienced singer was the lone performer to move from the stage and engage with the audience.
Ian Webster fittingly performed his composition Big Up, lauding a list of local entertainers including Stoute. Tiger Braithwaite and Kinky Star both performed tribute songs to Stoute, who was moved to tears by the latter’s presentation.
Chrisanna Stoute was joined on stage by the entire cast for the final song, Carry Your Candle, just before the cake was cut. (STT)