Mango Tree Production costume mas camp, located at 204 Parkside Ave., Brooklyn, is adorned with a kaleidoscope of colorful costumes set for masqueraders to choose from in preparation for the parade of the bands on Labor Day, Sept. 5.
Revelers are invited to the band’s soft launch on Friday, July 29 and Saturday, July 30, from 6 p.m., and 4 p.m. on July 31. A masquerade presentation with music, food and drinks for sale, will put revelers in the carnival spirit, leading up to the carnival.
Trinidad-born, costume designer and band leader, Pauleen Loobie, has collaborated with Derek Noel, founder of Deck Promotions, to bring 200 masqueraders to the parkway under the theme “Past, Present, Future,” where the band will vie in the small band category, featuring 10 creative sections.
The dynamic duo with over 50 years of experience in carnival presentation, Noel, one of the original promoters of Sesame Flyers, and Loobie, a 46-year veteran costume designer, promises that the band will put on an energetic show to catch the eyes of the judges.
Loobie who says she used the pandemic downtime to reimagine her creativity for a more awe-inspiring presentation, created a scaled-down collection of her design concept. The collection of demure attire with matching headpieces, for female, male, and children, is ready for purchase. The sections will include Fancy Sailors from the past, Juju Warriors, Indians, and Midnight robbers, among others.
The creations are complete with flowers, sequins, beading, and lots of razzle dazzle, in addition to vividness. Outfits in red, yellow, orange, as well as silver and black, make up the line of creations.
Loobie’s experience as a costume designer shines through in every piece of her fabrication. She is hoping for another win, as she sets the tone for a grand time on the parkway.
The easily accessible carnival mas camp, between Flatbush and Ocean avenues, displays the sensational creations, moderately priced from $300, and up to $350, to fit any body type. The camp is opened daily from 10am.
Loobie, winner of the Junior King, Best Band of the Year, Individual Queen, and Band Leader in previous competitions, and who showcased her carnival moves, told Caribbean Life that there is no mask mandate to join the band, but a matching facemask would be provided at the request of the masquerader.
Putting the Labor Day carnival into perspective, Noel noting that the celebration is a business, and explained that costumes must be manufactured in Trinidad and New York, “to give people who look like us, the opportunity to benefit while keeping the culture in the community.
He noted, too, that Caribbean nationals are not benefiting from the carnival, since most of the materials like feathers and other decorations came from companies outside of the community.
Funding is not being filtered down from the state to improve the carnival’s development and programming, possibly, due to lack of vision from the organization, he opined.
For more information, contact Derek Noel at 917-477-9926 and Pauleen Loobie at 347-772-4843. However, everyone is welcomed to stop by the mas camp during its hours of operation.