There will be no changes to the structure of the Calypso Monarch finals during Kaisorama on Thursday at Queen’s Park, Savannah, Port-of-Spain.
The same criteria as last year, one song per performer, will apply for the 15 finalists who were selected from among 40 calypsonians who performed at the Calypso Fiesta semifinals on Saturday after their performance at Skinner Park.
Reigning Calypso Monarch Helon Francis will defend his title at the show dubbed the Night of Champions and contestants will vie for the first prize of $700,000.
Each of the 15 calypsonians moved forward based on a point system, which totalled 100 points. The breakdown includes 30 points for melody, 30 points for lyrics, rendition 20, presentation 10, and originality 10.
Police Commissioner Gary Griffith, who was the subject of several of the calypsoes, also made a cameo appearance at Skinner Park. Surrounded by police officers, the Commissioner was greeted with hugs by many of the patrons before he returned to the VIP area.
Prime Minister Dr Keith Rowley also made a brief appearance and was embraced by supporters.
At the end of the competition veteran calypsonian National Carnival Commission chairman Winston “Gypsy” Peters earned a spot in the competition alongside veteran Anthony “All Rounder” Hendrickson, newcomer Ronaldo London, the reigning Young King, Erphaan Alves and Kurt Allen.
However, Michael “Sugar Aloes” Osouna, the only performer which prompted the crowd to wave toilet paper, did not make it to the finals.
In a telephone interview yesterday, Trinbago Unified Calypso Organisation (TUCO) vice president Steve “Ras Kommanda” Pascall said competitions were a set back to the artform.
“I wish competitions could be done with; is brother hating brother. The only thing good coming out of it is that it putting money in a man pocket. This is not what this thing is about. Society should be built out of love. This thing is hurting the artform.”
Brian London who sang in the second position of the competition with Who to Call was awarded the People’s Choice award. London received 877 votes and was presented a cheque of $10,000.
At the closing hours of the show, Neil “Iwer” George was among the entertainers called on stage.
Police officers formed a barricade to prevent members of the audience from damaging themselves and pulling down the barricade during the entertainment segment. Other acts include The A Team band, Explainer, Johnny King, Poser and Scrunter.