The beautiful sounds of Christmas filled the Lions Cultural Centre as the youngsters of eight primary schools sang and danced their hearts out at the 28th Annual Festival of Carols. The event was hosted by The Lions Club of Port of Spain Central in association with the Ministry of Education.
There was not the large audience of years gone by but those present were treated to two songs from each school, giving a mixture of traditional carols, Christmas songs and parang. Those who came enjoyed a morning of good entertainment on November 17.
Gaines Normal AME opened the festival with Mary Did You Know and Angels We Have Heard On High; Newtown Boys RC’s Oh Holy Night and La Promesa, led by, to quote presenter Nikki Crosby, “a young man who is definitely a future lead parandero.” Moulton Hall Methodist brought joy with Joy to the World and Away in a Manger while St Ursula’s Girls’ first song was an unusual rendition of Birthday of a King, followed by the always well received Mary Had a Baby Boy.
In the second half, after St Dominic’s Children Home’s Oh Holy Night and Aye Maria, came Sacred Heart Boys RC’s Mary Did You Know and Alumbra el Raguan, and St Margaret Boys AC with Away in a Manager and Mary Had a Baby Boy. The performances ended with Belmont Boys RC’s Little Drummer Boy and Santa Claus is Coming to Town.
There is no competition but every participant is considered a winner. President of the club, Lion Dave Gibson presented each performer with a bookmark commemorating their participation in Festival of Carols 2017 and a certificate of participation. Each school also received a cheque for $1,500 to be used for the school’s music programme. Saieed Garcia, standing in for his father, Cleveland Garcia, presented each school with a plaque on behalf of the Woodbrook St James Community Association. Sacred Heart Boys RC was the winner of the draw for a classical guitar donated by Simon’s Musical.
Special tribute was paid to the late Lion Leon Leacock, who began the festival and who died on August 7.
The enjoyable morning ended with the Lions giving a hearty roar of thanks and leading a sing-along to Let There Be Peace on Earth.