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Press Release From Independent Source

Clash Of The Carolers Puts Audience To Reminisce On BVI Traditions

The seventh district is pictured performing carols which won them first place prize. (Photo Credit: Mr. Ronnielle Frazer/GIS)
PARAQUITA BAY, Tortola, VI - The Clash of the Carolers singing competition evoked unity amongst its competitors and audience through song, dance, and drama reminiscent of the Virgin Islands holiday traditions.

Nine district groups participated in the competition last evening, which was hosted by the Social Development Department and the Department of Culture at the Eileene L. Parsons Auditorium at the H. Lavity Stoutt Community College. The seventh district emerged the winners and received a $1,000 cash prize.  Second place prize of $500 was awarded to the fifth district and third place prize of $250 was awarded to the second district. All other district groups received consolation prizes.

Director for the Department of Culture, Mrs. Luce Hodge-Smith gave welcoming remarks saying, “This evening’s production is a joint effort to help to preserve this tradition of ours and to encourage more carolers to come out.”

Mrs. Hodge-Smith added, “It is hoped that at the end of this competition this evening that you the carolers will remain in your groups and go out caroling if you have not already began to do so.”

The competition allowed each district to enter one group to perform a traditional Christmas song in the first round.  Five district groups advanced to the final round from which the winners were chosen. 

The district groups varied in size and included persons playing instruments such as the ukulele and the banjo; instruments of the traditional fungi band.  Some groups reenacted the caroling experience depicting the appreciation exchange of tarts, guava berry and bag ham after serenading.

Other performances on that evening included a song selection from Mr. Obel Penn, an instrumental selection from Mr. Dalan Vanterpool, a dance by St. Georges Anglican Group, and a skit by Elmore Stoutt High School Drama Group.

Caroling, also known as serenading is a Virgin Islands tradition in which groups of people go from house to house singing traditional or contemporary Christmas carols.  

All district groups and other interested persons are encouraged to continue caroling throughout the holiday season to keep this valued Virgin Islands tradition thriving.

The Ministry of Health and Social Development aspires to provide leadership that promotes health, social wellbeing, and a safe environment as positive resources for sustainable human development.

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