Kaios International wants ‘Kaios and Orda’

Yanique Oloko portrays “Commanche.”
Photo by Nelson A. King

Kaios International Mas Band wants nothing but “Kaios and Orda” on the parkway, according to co-bandleaders Mark McLean and Heather Greenidge.

“We are portraying the chaos and order of carnival,” said the Trinidadian-born producers in a Caribbean Life interview. “It’s a duality of both pleasure and the sweat of hard work to bring it all together.

“The name we have chosen reminds all of the hard work involved in preparing for the parade,” they added. “It’s all just fun and games, and colors and music, and dancing.

“It’s truck-building, sound-checking, making costumes and filling last-minute orders, staying available at mas camp to be visible for long hours, in addition to our lives aside from carnival,” they continued in unison.

McLean and Greenidge, who hail from Port-of-Spain, the Trinidad and Tobago capital, said the band comprises eight sections, with equal number of men and women.

The sections are: Gold Dust – portrayed by Nakya Evans; Commanche – portrayed by Yanique Oloko; Commanchero – portrayed by Janelle George; Apache – portrayed by Kaylona Arthur; Blue Star – portrayed by Bianca Johnson; Caribbean Jewel – portrayed by Chantal and Mervyn Jackson; Mad Max; and Paradise. At press time, presenters for the last two sections have not been identified.

McLean and Greenidge said the band, which was launched in 2003, “evolved into Kaios via the chaos it took to bring it into being.

“Over the years, not only has Kaios been able to enjoy the festivities and embrace our masqueraders as family, we have also been able to place on a few occasions as well,” they disclosed, stating that Kaios placed third twice and second once in the West Indian American Day Carnival Association (WIADCA) competition.

“So, to be clear, Kaios is a real contender on the road now as well,” McLean and Greenidge affirmed. “As always, we hope to spread the joy of Caribbean carnival and culture, and grow in positive ways all the time.

“We expect the continued enjoyment of culture, increasing our family and, of course, impressing the judges,” they added.

McLean and Greenidge said the Kaios family hails from “all over the Caribbean,” as well as from the U.S., “of non-West Indian heritage.”

Kaios’ in-house DJs, known as The Franchise, or TF Entertainment, provide music for masqueraders.

The mas camp is located at 1523 St. John’s Pl., between Rochester and Buffalo avenues.

McLean can be reached at (917) 327-0488 and Greenidge at (646) 441-8891.

More from Around NYC