After an absence of six years, the National Parang Association of T&T (NPATT) will be hosting a competition this year.
NPATT president Larry Denalli said the group would not be detered by funding challenges. He said nine parang bands had registered so far and the preliminaries will take place on October 28 at the Arima Velodrome, with the semi-finals at Palo Seco on November 5 and the finals on December 10 at the Arima Velodrome.
Denalli, who told the T&T Guardian the competition was last held in 2010, said: “With the support of a young and vibrant executive, parang in Trinidad and Tobago is healthy and alive. In spite of the negatives, which the executive is turning into positives, the show will definitely go on.”
He spoke about NPATT’s plans at the Pre-Launch of the Parang 2016 Season at the group’s headquarters in Arima on Saturday night. The event featured performances by top parang bands, including Las Buenas Nuevas of Santa Rosa, La Rueda Del Agua from Diego Martin and Amantes de la Musica of Malabar.
Denalli said NPATT now had a website and had established a presence on social media with the aim of keeping parang music alive for generations to come. He said the group had approached 45 local companies for sponsorship but had only received positive responses from two, Penta Paints and T&T Mortgage Finance.
He said the group’s goal was to become self sufficient by hosting parang events throughout the year and NPATT’s headquarters is being transformed into a hub for parang music not only for Christmas, but at Carnival time as well.
“What I want to see happen in the future is a marriage of the different cultures which will cross pollinate the artforms and provide a platform of our rich cultures for the entertainment of locals and foreigners,” Denalli said.