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South band leader slashes costume price
While many mas makers anticipated slower sales for costumes this Carnival given the continued shrinkage of T&T’s economy, Kalicharan Carnival has sold most of its costumes.
With just two weeks until the celebrations hits the streets, band leader Aaron Kalicharan said seven out of their 10 sections in this 2018 presentation, Elixir of Life, have been sold out and just a few spots remain in their open sections.
Included in the sold out sections was a $1000 costume that was created to help those mas lovers who were struggling financially.
At the Harris Street mas camp yesterday, Kalicharan said that they expected a tougher Carnival in terms of sales and prepared in advance to cut prices in order to keep their capacity. But instead of worrying too much about slow sales, they targeted mas lovers from south Trinidad who would usually play mas in Port-of-Spain.
For the price of a back line costume in Port-of-Spain you can get a front line piece in San Fernando and have a great experience on the road for Carnival Monday and Tuesday that is second to none.
“Based on our expectation, we’re going along with our schedule in that we have all the front line pieces for all sections sold out. Therefore, our strategy in providing more economical costumes for revellers has worked. What I mean by this is that the costumes are slightly cheaper than last year and this year, we further injected into the market by creating a fashion section, which is the Black Diamond section, where you can get a costume for $1000. That entire section was sold out by the first week in January,” Kalicharan said.
While some people in San Fernando have chosen to hold back on playing mas, he said they are seeing a lot of new members, who are from south Trinidad but would usually play mas in Port-of-Spain.
With the cost of living going up over the past two years, some mas lovers found it hard to spend those thousands on costumes in the capital. For many masqueraders living in south Trinidad, the cost also included accommodation at hotels and guest houses, along with food and other services.
But Kalicharan is confident of their brand, saying that the costumes are stylish while the materials are sourced from the same suppliers that the Port-of-Spain bands used.
Keeping their band small allowed them to pay attention to each masquerader, ensuring that they are taken care of from the time they register to after the celebrations end.
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