Trinidad and Tobago born costume designer Donna Bridgeman will introduce a new concept in playing mas on Eastern Parkway with a tribute to one of the greatest individuals that ever lived — former South African President Nelson Mandela.
Bridgeman, who is the band leader and executive producer, is teaming up with fashion expert Janice Lawrence Clarke for DRJ Vision in Motion presents “Mandela” – a dynamic presentation that will showcase the extraordinary life of the icon from his childhood to his passing.
“Mandela was a man of peace who went through trials and tribulations in his life,” said Bridgeman who said she dreamt about the concept and called on co-produce Lawrence-Clarke to put the band in motion.
She also wanted to tone down the traditional skimpy costume and provocative display on the Parkway for a more historic tribute that she said would make a statement, and pay respect to the former leader of the ANC party.
“We wanted to change the face of carnival so we chose the theme Vision in Motion, that would express our dream,” said Bridgeman, who communicated her concern for the efforts by some citizens to eliminate carnival from the Eastern Parkway.
“We want to maintain a proper image playing mas, explained the kiddies costume designer whose ultimate goal is to keep Labor Day carnival alive and well in the community.
“We hope other masquerades would follow through with us,” added Bridgeman who is encouraged by the many revelers who have expressed interest in joining the medium-size band of 275 masqueraders.
Lawrence Clarke, who will add her fashion and style sensibility to the bands ensembles, said the sections would showcase images of Revolutionary, Isolation, Freedom, Ancestral and African tribal that will encompass Mandela’s life.
Thanks to Dennis Pierre who worked diligently to complete the prototypes, revelers will be decked out in costumes designed from fabrics such as burlap, African print, crinoline and raffia.
Deejay Teddy Mohammed will provide live music for the band and a flock of white doves is expected to be released during the parade in tribute to the late great leader.
The camp, located at 5623 Beverly Rd. and 57th Street in Brooklyn, which was recently launched with costume-clad masqueraders and accompanied by the New York Samba, will accept orders starting on Aug. 17 by appointment only.
Call, 347-495-0434 or 347-620-2557. Email [email protected].