Founded in 1993, the Holders Season is established as the
premier cultural event in the Caribbean. Acclaimed nationally
and internationally, the season is a celebration of opera,
music and theatre. The production always plays to capacity
houses and it's high artistic standard draws audiences from
around the world.
Holders House, St.James, again plays host to this musical
and theatrical festival. This stately house has been in existence
for over 300 years and is an interesting mixture of English
and Barbadian vernacular. The grounds are extensive and lovely
with mature tropical trees and shrubs, the perfect setting
for the open-air theatre that comes alive every year during
the Holders Season.
The 1999 season opened with an evening of traditional Caribbean
and Latin American music, featuring artists from Barbados,
Trinidad and Tobago, and Venezuela. The festival will also
included two performances of Yarico, a musical based on an
18th-century Barbadian legend about a slave girl. Since its
inception six years ago, Holders Season has been host to some
of the world's most renowned theater and opera talent, including
Luciano Pavarotti with the Royal Philharmonic Orchestra in
1997. Two productions in particular - Mozart's The Marriage
of Figaro and Verdi's La Traviata - have received great acclaim.
One of Holders highlights was Kit Hesketh Harvey's Caribbean
adaptation of Shakespeare's The Tempest, with a leading cast
of Bajan and British artists. Directed by Toby Gough and choreographed
by Kenn Oldfield, this production was performed on three evenings.
The new "Little Theatre" adjoining Holders House,
an old plantation house, featured a number of cabaret productions
during Holders Season. These included a performance of the
intriguing Kit and the Widow with artists from London's West
End, a presentation of great 20th century song writers by
Britain's Sir Richard Rodney Bennett, and an evening of international
cabaret beneath the stars, starring Canadian concert pianist
Sasha Starcevich and comic singers Stewart Collins and Andy
St. James, Barbados, West Indies
Congaline Carnival (March - April)
Carnival was started in 1994 and it's emphasis is on good music
and fun! The Congaline Village is the focal point of the festival.
Set up on the Dover playing field in St.Lawrence Gap, the village
consists of several food and beverage stalls as well as local
arts and crafts stalls.
The Village features entertainment in the form of comedy
and music shows, with the music varying from gospel to calypso.
The night-time entertainment is especially popular, with the
best calypso and reggae singers from Barbados and other Caribbean
As you see the colourful spectacle of the Carnival and the
diversity of the people, enjoy the local food and beverages
on offer and dance to the sweet strains of calypso, you will
agree that the Congaline Carnival is well worth the visit!