The chance to showcase to Brazilian music industry experts at the social evening held as part of the Government Political/Commercial mission to São Paulo last September, has really paid off for entertainer Stedson ‘Red Plastic Bag’ Wiltshire and musician David ‘Zig-E’ Walcott.
Red Plastic Bag (RPB) and Zig-E were members of the cultural delegation headed by Senior Business Development Officer with the National Cultural Foundation (NCF), Ms. Alison Sealy-Smith, who travelled to São Paulo, Brazil last year.
This is the second performance opportunity for Barbadian artistes resulting from that mission to Brazil. Zig-E was the first to take the Caribbean musical experience back to the South American country with a fusion of Pan and Alternative, performing alongside the band Holger at the Sermana Internacional de Musica in December last year. Now Red Plastic Bag has been invited back to São Paulo to perform at the Verada Cultural Festival last weekend (May 17 and 18, 2014).
The some 20,000 patrons expected to be in attendance will be treated to a sweet soca and pan combo, as Zig-E joins Red Plastic Bag on stage providing the musical accompaniment for many of his popular hits.
The pursuit of performance possibilities like these was one of the major objectives identified by the NCF as part of the cultural aspect of the Government’s Political/Commercial mission in a thrust to promote the local cultural industries in new markets.
The aim of this performance mission is two-fold, Red Plastic Bag will be promoting Crop Over in an effort to increase the visitor arrivals to the Festival from Brazil. Chief Executive Officer of the NCF, Mr. Cranston Browne remarked, “This is an excellent niche market for the Festival, Brazilians are immersed in the carnival culture and some of the people already have a penchant for our type of music through their Axé which fuses different Afro-Caribbean genres, such as Marcha, Reggae, and Calypso.”
Mr. Browne continued, “Our efforts to put Crop Over on the minds of the thousands who will be within earshot of RPB’s voice and the many times that number of eyes who will be viewing worldwide, was made possible through a partnership with the Barbados Tourism Authority (BTA), since the international marketing of the Festival falls under their domain.”
Miss. Toni Thorne also departed the island on Thursday, May 15 to join the two musicians as choreographer for the Brazilian dancers who will be a part of RPB’s act. As a young entrepreneur, Toni was chosen not only for her proven ability as a choreographer but also for her strong ties to Crop Over and her capacity to effectively sell the Barbados brand.