KAISERSLAUTERN, Germany – When it was over, the crowd of about 2,500 people looking on here in Kaiserslautern began calling for more. But they were left with the chant from Maximus Dan‘s World Cup hit “I‘m a Soca Warrior” ringing in their ears.
And it wasn‘t the composer performing the song but Shurwayne Winchester, Iwer George and members of H2o Phlo. The occasion was an event called “Fan Fest” held in a park downtown in the city where Trinidad and Tobago played its final World Cup game against Paraguay. This was essentially evenings of entertainment for fans attending the World Cup in all German cities.
Culture Minister, Joan Yuille-Williams, piloted the Cabinet note to have Trinidad and Tobago send a 150 member cultural contingent and officials to Germany as a major strategy to expose the country to the world at a time when the footballers were also having an impact with their spirited brand of play.
Earlier Black Stalin and Luta, backed by Roy Cape and the All Stars who provided music for all the performers, warmed up the audience with authentic calypso before the Soca stars took the stage. Rikki Jai and H2o Phlo also performed earlier.
Shurwayne opened his performance with the pop sounding, cross-over ditty, “Hey Colabar” then followed with his monster Road March hit for 2005, “Give Thanks”. Later he and Iwer George shared the stage in getting the audience to put their “hands in the air” and “wave something”, Iwer interspersing his performance with snatches of his 2006 offering, “We Reach”.
All the Soca artistes then joined in to perform “I‘m a Soca Warrior” and got the crowd to sing along. Many of them had witnessed the street parade by masqueraders and the Laventille Rhythm Section in Eibenstrasse in downtown Kaiserslautern.
The street parade was essentially a mini carnival with characters such as Blue Devils, Tan Tan and Saga Boy, Tassa Drummers, Moko Jumbies, King of Carnival 2006, Leroy Prieto, with Soca Jumbie and Ibis in Flight by Susan Badree.
There were extempo performances by Ewart Serrant, Skatie and Superior at a booth manned by the Trinidad and Tobago Tourism Development Company.
On Sunday June 18, there were more cultural performances in the city of Riesenbrunnen featuring Phase ll Pan Groove, 2006 Calypso Monarch, Luta, Calypso Rose, Rikki Jai, Black Stalin, Kees Diffenthaler, Maximus Dan, Shurwayne Winchester as well as Fisher Folk and Soca dances.