Soca Monarch contestants receive cut price money

Caribbean Prestige Foundation for the Performing Arts (CPF) is today holding the nation’s soca artistes who performed in its Carnival 2009 competitions to ransom, by withholding their cash prizes until they sign over a percentage to the organisation. The contestants in the bmobile International Soca Monarch Competition and the National Lotteries Classic Groovy Monarch have no access to their price money until they sign a contract with the organisation. The contract commits the artists to give five per cent of their winnings back to the foundation, and in the case of Fay-Ann Lyons-Alvarez, the document obligates her to defend her crown. Former Power monarchs Bunji Garlin and Shurwayne Winchester, Hunter and Nadia Batson are the artistes who have gone public with the matter. Other artists, who did not sign the contract, had cheques cut in their names for Friday’s prize-distribution ceremony held at the Ballroom of the Cascadia Hotel and Conference Centre in St Ann’s, Port-of-Spain. However, the money was deducted without their consent, a source revealed. Many local contestants boycotted the awards.

Read full story at Trinidad Guardian.