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Carvalho’s mas gets $1000 cheaper
...after mystery donation for every costume sold
Friday, February 10, 2012
When masman Glen Carvalho received an anonymous e-mail from a Web site promising to donate $1,000 to the purchase of every costume sold he was sceptical. The veteran masmaker, whose presentation this year is “Twenty Twelve,” was made a believer days later when a large amount of money was transferred to his account. Carvalho is now curious as to who the donor may be. “We got this e-mail claiming to be from a past masquerader that said for every masquerader that registered this person would pay $1,000. I thought it was a joke.” Carvalho said in an interview.
When the money was deposited, however, Carvalho used the band’s Facebook page to announce that every masquerader would receive $1,000 off their costume and masqueraders who already had registered would be refunded $1,000. This means Carvalho’s costumes are now selling at around $1,500. “The e-mail also said if we used up the initial money deposited then the person would send more funds,” he said. Carvalho had no idea who the “good Samaritan” could be. “I’ve tried a number of avenues to track this person down. At this point they could be male or female, I have no idea,” he said. Carvalho who had been absent from mas for over 25 years returned three years ago and feels something is missing. “I introduced panty, bra and feathers. My band was the Tribe of that era,” he said.
He said the reason he came back into mas was because of his children and grandchildren but was disappointed at the lack of creativity from bandleaders.
He added: “These people are not bandleaders. They are organisers. If I took every red costume in any band and put them together and got these CEOs and bandleaders to look at them, nobody would be able to pick theirs. “Back then you could watch somebody walking down the street in a costume and say ‘that’s a Wayne Berkely costume or that’s Minshall mas,’ now China doing everything, so they all look the same. “You could tell somebody they playing in a mango section and give them a breadfruit tree and get away with it,” he added
He said while mas was big business for the large bands, it was the small and medium bands that were “ketching hell.” He said the big bands were not in the industry for the culture but to make money. “That is wrong. That is not Trinidad mas. They are bleeding the culture dry and not putting anything back into it,” Carvalho said.