Grenadian-born Derek Noel, the co-band leader of the Brooklyn-based Resilience Mas, plans to make a “Crazy Mess” with the band’s presentation in this year’s West Indian American Day Carnival Parade on Brooklyn’s Eastern Parkway.
“The concept is to celebrate the resilience of the Dominican people who suffered a devastating hurricane in September 2017,” Noel told Caribbean Life in an exclusive interview Monday night. “Our costumes are designed to reflect the support we received from the entire Caribbean and south and Central America.”
Noel, who with Hillary Thomas and Curtis Jn-Baptist, produces “Crazy Mess,” said about 500 masqueraders, in 10 sections, will complete the portrayal.
“A number of pieces will have the flag and main area code on the sleeves and the front of the various costumes,” he said. “We will also reflect traditional cultural wear, topping it off with designs from the Caribbean island that is the mother of carnival and the island that was there for us big time, Trinidad and Tobago.
“So, it a celebration of our federation in Brooklyn,” Noel declared.
He noted that on the late afternoon of Sept. 18, 2017, “after the winds of Hurricane Maria increased to a Category 5 storm, with hurricane force winds that extended 30 miles from its center, it scored a direct hit on the island of Dominica.”
“The improvisational skills of Dominicans were challenged after Maria left the island dazed and isolated,” Noel said. “Resilience Mas takes its name from the spirit of the people of Dominica facing adversity.
“Nearly two years after, signs of resiliency and rebirth are plentiful in Dominica; but, in some ways, the island is changed forever,” he added, stating that the costumes are “a contemporary twist on the patterns found in traditional creole wear in Dominica.”
He said Jn Baptist designed the “Crazy Mess” logo, featuring Asa Banton, “one of the biggest stars of hard-hitting Bouyon music (in Dominica).”
“Resilience Mas will bring the energy of Dominica Carnival to the West Indian parade this Labor Day,” Noel said.
The mas camp is located at 204 Parkside Ave., Brooklyn.
For more information, call (917) 477-9926; (347) 278-6633; or (347) 276-9979.