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Trinidad is known as the birthplace of calypso music, a style of music created as a form of communication by African slaves and honed in the island’s Carnival celebrations. The influence of the music can be heard everywhere, from street performers (you may hear calypso, as well as its offspring, reggae, soca and rapso) to some of Trinidad’s most famous performance venues.
The legacy of world-famous Lord Kitchener, who gained massive popularity performing calypso in England, the Calypso Review (also known as Kitchener’s Tent) has operated out of various venues around Port of Spain since its establishment in 1964, but has every year showcased the best of the style’s talent wherever it has gone. The tent has continued on even after Kitchener’s death in 2000; the 2006 event was hosted at the SWWTU Hall and was one of the standout musical events of Carnival.
Though perhaps not as established as the musical community on the island, its dramatic community is also a presence. Port of Spain’s
Trinidad Theatre Workshop
is the most notable company, founded in 1959 by Derek Walcott, a future Nobel laureate in literature. Over the years, the TTW has performed a wide range of shows, ranging from classical works to those created by Walcott himself and other contemporary works.