Carriacou Parang Festival

Carriacou Parang Festival

Weekend before Christmas, December 25
The Carriacou Parang Festival has been held annually since 1977 to sustain the musical tradition of house-to-house serenading by acoustic string bands at Christmas time. Located in the Caribbean Sea, Carriacou is the largest of the sister islands of Grenada, of which it is a dependency. Carriacou is just 13 square miles in size, with a population of mixed Scottish and African ancestry.
The Parang Festival is held in the form of a musical competition. Organized parang groups from villages throughout Carriacou, its neighboring island Petit Martinique, and Grenada compete for cash prizes and a challenge trophy. Groups comprise not more than eight members, all dressed in colorful outfits to reflect the festive season. Some of the instruments used include the bass drum, iron, guitar, quarto, violin, marack (shack-shack), mandolin, saxophone, tambourine, and others. Groups make two appearances, first to perform a "test-piece" Christmas carol selected by the festival committee. In their second appearance, groups perform a song of their choice. Groups are judged on appearance as well as performance.
In 1987, the festival was extended from one day to two, so that international entertainers could perform for the people of Carriacou and Petit Martinique. As a result, the Saturday night of the festival is known as "foreign entertainers' night." The festival was founded and is run by the Mt. Royal Progressive Youth Movement, a non-profit youth organization dedicated to developing its community and serving the less fortunate in society.
CONTACTS:
Mt. Royal Progressive Youth Movement
www.grenadines.net/carriacou/parang.html#aboutparang
Granada Board of Tourism
P.O. Box 293
St. George's, Grenada
www.grenadagrenadines.com/index2.html
(c)
References in periodicals archive ?
14-16: 30th Annual Carriacou Parang Festival on Carriacou.
17-19: 27th Annual Carriacou Parang Festival, island of Carriacou.