Showcase cultural legacy on television, says Marshall - by Barbados Today
April 17, 2021
April 17, 2021
April 17, 2021
A prominent UWI academic has come up with a plan which he suggests should be a priority for the Government at this time, apart from the ongoing national clean-up campaign.
Director of the Sir Arthur Lewis Institute for Social and Economic Studies (SALISES) Dr Don Marshall is convinced that a greater focus on culture within the context of the current COVID-19 pandemic would reap many benefits for artistes and the economy as a whole.
“As a matter of first priority outside of the national cleanup, I think our television should be used not so much for the stand home parties, but much for what I would call stand home cultural events and displays,” Dr Marshall told Barbados TODAY.
“So we need our artistes and others who are idle at the moment through no fault of theirs, but COVID-related, be put in concerts for viewers to see them. We need our artistes there…we can convert the coming Crop Over into a season of the arts. That season of the arts could take on music…might not necessarily have to be new music…but we should be seeing visual arts, dance, music, song,” he suggested.
Dr Marshall is of the view that these performances should be displayed on the island’s sole television station as a regular 8 p.m. to 10 p.m. feature.
“I would think that if we really are talking about reimagining the way forward, we have to start thinking about what do we need to do to engender confidence, particularly cultural confidence…confidence in a future that is Barbados…because the urge to flee, the urge to seek ‘greener pastures’ elsewhere, would be there for mobile populations. It would not be there for persons who are not mobile and to have to live in despair in this place,” Dr Marshall contended.
“And so we have to re-engender a certain kind of cultural identity and certain kinds of cultural pride and there’s nowhere better than to showcase the arts. This is where our greatest creativity lies. This is where we can revive the idea of the calypso tent, where the tent now is a potpourri…like mini-cohobblepot showcases where we can see artistes perform some of their legendary hits along with anything contemporary,” declared the SALISES director.
He noted that there is a lot about the country in terms of artistic expression to which the average Barbadian is not exposed.
“Each painting for example for sale that is normally in hotel lobbies, we don’t see them. So I am thinking that in much the same way that previous administrations would have prepared for Cavalcades and planned for the showcasing of calypso tents for television, we can decide to make a made-for-television season of arts and culture…some events you can pay-for-view and some can be shown on terrestrial television,” Dr Marshall suggested.
He said that in this way, the subsidy which is being planned for the cultural industry, the actors and producers of culture could see a return “right there” on television.