Carnival Conference March 2013


Carnival Conference March 2013

John Fox

John Fox tells it like it is at The 2nd Carnival Archive Conference

The 2nd Carnival Archive Conference will take place on March 15th and 16th 2013 at the UK Centre for Carnival Arts.

Here’s One We Made Earlier
A free 2 day conference celebrating the rich & diverse carnival heritage discovered during the Carnival Archive Project

Tickets are free (£15 refundable deposit)
To book your place please email:

Download Conference Programme


About the conference

This is the 2nd carnival archive conference for the archive project. (The first was held in February 2012.) It will take place at The UK Centre For Carnival Arts is Europe’s only dedicated carnival building, specifically designed and built for carnival.

Despite its very long and varied history, carnival is a very under-researched area. Little academic work or systematic collection has taken place. The conferences are our means of sharing the knowledge gathered during the archive project. The conference’s target audience is the wider heritage sector and carnivalists. It is taking place over two days to ensure that it can reach both of these groups.

About the archive project

The carnival archive project is an HLF funded project in the eastern region. The project received £0.6m to develop a digital carnival archive over 18 months, ending in April 2013.

The project is working in 4 hubs across the region (Luton, Northampton, Southend, and Norwich). Its primary activities are to develop a digital archive about carnival, engage with the education sector and generate interest and understanding about carnival heritage.

UKCCA is preparing to develop an HLF bid for a national carnival archive using the knowledge gained from this regional pilot. We hope that the 2nd carnival archive conference will begin to develop national support for the next stage of our work.



Chaired By Hilary Carty

Friday March 15th 10am-4pm

10.00–10.05 Morning Session
A musical welcome to the morning from Alex d’ Great

10.05–10.15 Hilary Carty

10.15–10.45 Keynote Speaker
Fiona Talbot Head of Museums, Libraries & Archives HLF

10.40–10.50 Welcome To Carnival
Pax Nindi FRSA Artistic Director UKCCA

10.50–11.05 BREAK

11.05–11.45 Being a female Designer and Artistic Director In Carnival
Ali Pretty - Artistic Director of Kinetika

11.45–12.05 Girl Power
Carnival Queens & the changing role of women in carnival: Charlotte Dickerson & Tola Dabiri, Carnival Archive Project

12.05–12.35 Celia and Alex d’ Great

12.35–1.05 Women In Pan
Mary Genis

1.05–2.00 Lunch
Fish and Chips: a taste of Southend-on-Sea

Afternoon Session

Parades And Processions

2.00–2.05 Alex d’Great

2.05–2.10 Hilary Carty

2.15–2.55 Uprising!
John Fox Dead Good Ideas (Welfare State International)

2.55–3.10 Rampage Dragon Dance

3.10–3.25 BREAK

3.25–3.45 Steve SWICA

3.45–4.05 Tim Hill

4.05–4.30 John Hegley
The wonderful poetry of John Hegley

4.30–4.35 Hilary Carty

Conference Dinner 6pm-11pm
6.15–7.00 Samba Dance Workshop with Mariana Pinho

7.00–8.00 Dinner
A Brazilian dinner: a taste of Norwich

8.00–8.15 John Hegley
John Hegley’s after-dinner poetry

8.15–8.30 Mariana Pinho / Samba Dance

8.30 till late Rabo de Fuguete


Saturday March 16th 10am-4pm

Morning Session
10.00–10.05 A musical welcome to the morning - Pan performance tbc

10.05–10.10 Hilary Carty

10.10–10.40 Archiving And You!
Ruth Tompsett

10.40–11.20 The Carnival Archive Experience Northampton

11.20–11.40 BREAK

11.40–12.20 The Carnival Archive Experience Southend

12.20–1.00 Carnival Dance-Off!

1.00–2.00 Lunch
Caribbean lunch: a taste of Luton & Northampton

Afternoon Session
2.00–2.10 Hilary Carty

2.10–2.15 Ukcca And The Way Forward
Hopeton Walker Chair of UKCCA

2.15–2.20 Pax Nindi

2.20–3.00 The Carnival Archive Experience Norwich & Norfolk

3.00–3.15 BREAK

3.15–3.45 The Carnival Archive Experience Luton

3.45–4.00 Musical Mash Up

4.00–4.05 Hilary Carty - Conference closes


Programme subject to change.




John Hegley

The author currently resides close to his North London birthplace. Educated in Luton, Bristol and Bradford University. Joined Interaction community arts collective in 1978, and has subsequently continued their interactive ethos. Early ’80s John Peel Sessions with the Popticians began a series of broadcasts across the radio network which suggests a varied palette and appeal. Has produced twelve books, two albums and one mug. Once performed at a Colombian women’s prison. Has not been asked back.


Praise for John Hegley:

‘Consistently plain-speaking yet metaphysical, mordant yet mellifluous, experimental yet traditional … one of our most entertaining and communicative poets.’ Michael Horovitz, Telegraph

‘John Hegley is to potatoes what Wordsworth has been to daffodils’ Observer

‘Scandalously talented’ The Sunday Times

‘A mainstay of the alternative comedy scene … an incurable entertainer’ Guardian

‘A Triumph’ Motorcycle Mechanics

Ali Pretty

A designer specializing in carnival and outdoor performance. She is known for her skills and experience in creating large-scale hand-painted silks that have been seen in opening ceremonies, numerous Olympic related events and carnival performances around the world.

Highlights include: Designer WOMAD 85-91, Atlanta 96 Olympics Opening ceremonies, Winning Designer Notting Hill Carnival, 1998/9 and 2004, Kolkata Carnival 2003, Beijing Cultural Olympiad 2008, Torch Relay events, 2004, 2008, 2012, FIFA 2009, CWC Opening and Closing Ceremonies Abu Dhabi, Paralympic Closing Ceremony London 2012, Team GB Parade London 2012.

Ali’s archive is being collected by The V & A Museum to be launched online in April 2013.

Ali is the founding member and artistic director of Kinetika. She has led teams of artists to deliver large-scale participatory events for over 15 years. She has a wealth of experience in facilitating artists and communities from diverse backgrounds to come together to create their own celebrations.

Alexander D.Great

Born in Port of Spain, Trinidad, Alexander grew up in London. A professional musician and composer for more than 30 years he returned to his Calypso roots in the late ‘80’s creating his own fusion of Calypso and Poetry, “Socablues”. Alex divides his time between live performance, running his own small record label and doing poetry and calypso workshops in schools and colleges. Since February 2000 he has been Calypsonian – in- Residence for the BBC for whom he regularly delivers renditions on matters of the moment. He was UK Calypso Monarch in 2010 and 2011.

John Fox

Artist, cultural provocateur, advocate of vernacular culture, beachcomber and poet. Directed Welfare State International (1968-2006) creating lantern festivals, site-specific celebrations, carnival operas and £2m, Lanternhouse in Ulverston, Cumbria. Raised the Titanic in Limehouse, shifted Trident Sheds in Barrow, wrote: Eyes on Stalks” (Methuen).Numerous fellowships and awards.

Co-Director Dead Good Guides; practising secular ceremonies and sculptural installations for Rites of Passage. Working with a scientific perspective to create "The Weather Station", an eco-installation/ wooden stilt house on the west shore of Morecambe Bay.

Hilary Carty

Hilary Carty is an independent coach and consultant specialising in leadership development, management and organisational change. Prior to working independently, Hilary was the Director of the Cultural Leadership Programme, a £22m government investment in excellence in leadership within the UK cultural and creative industries which is acknowledged to have raised the sectors’ leadership capacity, facilitated diverse leadership practice and personnel, and delivered increased economic benefits for cultural sector leaders and organisations.

Hilary’s career demonstrates a successful record of senior level management experience in the arts, cultural and creative industries including Director, London (Arts) at Arts Council England, with responsibility for overseeing the development of arts programmes and funded organisations, as well as leading the Regional Arts Plan for London and steering the Council’s work on the Olympic Games and Paralympic Games. This followed her role as Director, Culture and Education at London 2012, where she delivered the inception and planning of the Cultural Olympiad as part of London's successful Olympic bid.

Steve Fletcher

Steve Fletcher is founder and Artistic Director of SWICA (South Wales Intercultural Community Arts) Wales' leading carnival arts organisation. Since its inception in 1990 SWICA has successfully delivered hundreds of carnival events and parades across Wales and beyond including the annual Cardiff Carnival which falls on Saturday 10th August 2013 this year, as well as animating the annual St David's Day Parade through Cardiff.

Mary Genis

Mary Genis is the award winning founder and artistic director of CultureMix Arts Ltd, a not for profit organisation providing a highly respected UK wide carnival education service in steel pan music and carnival arts. Based in Berkshire at the CultureMix Centre for Steel Pan Music, Mary leads RASPO – Reading All Steel Percussion Orchestra, empowering artists and aspiring young musicians with professional performance opportunities, business development training, creative industry work experience and employment.

She has worked with WOMAD, Glastonbury and Notting Hill Carnival, and is a guest lecturer at Reading College. Mary is a trustee for visual arts company Jelly, a school governor for Theale Primary, and an advisor for mentoring charity Reading Refocus. Mary has been a board member for Readipop music projects and South Hill Park Arts Centre. She worked at Reading Borough Council and Arts Council England South East as the Arts Development Officer for Cultural Diversity.

Her advisory work with Arts Council England includes her role on the South East selection panel for London 2012’s major project ‘Artist Taking the Lead’, and as a member of the South East Outdoor Leadership group. Mary’s role on Reading’s 2012 Partnership Board helped to organise local events for the 2012 Olympics.

Mary was awarded a Clore Fellowship through the Clore Leadership Programme that included a secondment at Locog – the London Organising Committee for the Olympic Games. She has won two British Association of Steelband awards for RASPO and a BBC Berkshire community contribution award. She is a regular contributor to music education publications, radio and television and is a Pride of Reading Cultural Champion.

Celia Burgess-Macey

Celia has had a lifetime of teaching and advising in London schools and recently retired from a post as lecturer in English in education at Goldsmiths, where she taught on the BA, PGCE and MA programmes. She introduced a carnival arts module into the teacher training and MA programmes and undertook research in the UK and Caribbean on the use of carnival in schools. She headed a funded research project (HEARTS-Higher Education Arts) at Goldsmiths which looked at the role of carnival arts within teacher training and partnership schools. She continues to advise schools on the implementation of carnival in the curriculum.

Celia is also an experienced and enthusiastic masquerader and has taken part in Nottinghill carnival since 1985. Her family by marriage are Trinidadians scattered throughout the diaspora and she has benefitted over many years from their shared knowledge and experience, including within the early steelband movement.

Marcus Patteson

Marcus Patteson is Executive Director of Norwich & Norfolk Community Arts (NORCA), a participatory arts charity with a focus on carnival. NORCA has had a carnival development remit for Norfolk since its inception in 2001, running CPD, setting up the Norfolk Carnival Network and developing a number of carnival projects, including 2009’s ‘Back to the Streets’. Marcus has overseen NORCA’s involvement in the Carnival Archive Project and the development of the project locally.

Marcus is also a practicing carnivalist. He has studied and performed Brazilian music for over 15 years, originally training under Dudu Tucci on One Voice Music’s Advanced Instruction in Percussion course. He set up Norwich Samba in 2000 and co-directed the band with Paul Weston for 10 years, participating in hundreds of carnivals and events. His love of Brazilian music took him to Brazil in 2002 for three months of research split between Rio, Salvador and Recife, followed in 2007/08 by a 14-week residency with Rio bloco, Monobloco, including performances as part of 2008’s carnival season. Marcus has artistic and musical direction experience from carnivals, bands and stage, including Celestial Carnival (2003), Back to the Streets (2009), Globalbeat (2006), C-Attack (2008), Threepenny Opera (2009) and the Rabo Street Show (2011)

In March 2008, Marcus formed Brazilian samba-funk-rock outfit, Rabo de Foguete, bringing together experienced local musicians to offer a high quality exemplar of Brazilian music and seeking to break new ground with this format. In 2011 the group received funding from Arts Council England, through Escalator Outdoor Arts, to develop a street show, which has formed the basis of Marcus’ continuing exploration of performance within carnival and the carnivalesque.


Debra Romain

Debra has been based in the Tabernacle, Powis Square, London (now Carnival Village) since 1999 teaching the steelpan art form as part of the Mangrove Steel Band's education programme. Over the years she has taught a range of students there, some as young as five years old. Debra's additional role there as an arranger of the Mangrove Junior Steel Band has seen them achieve Junior Panorama titles in 2000, 2002-05, TV appearances and documentaries on BBC, ITV and Disney Channel, performances for The Dioceses of Trinidad and Tobago and runners up in 2006 BAS Pan Explosion Competition. Debra has gone on to judge both Junior Panorama and Pan Explosion competitions several times since. When given the opportunity she has arranged several pieces for Mangrove Steel Band for whom she has also played as a band member since the late 90's.

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