Antigua’s very own soca diva Claudette Peters will join artistes from across the region at a special event to mark the inauguration of the USA’s first black Vice President Kamala Harris.
The virtual January 17 event will feature a host of the Caribbean’s biggest names in music in tribute to Harris’ Jamaican roots.
The show will be broadcast at 7pm on the Facebook, Twitter and YouTube platforms of One Caribbean Television (OCTV), as well as on 102.9FM in Antigua and Barbuda.
And while the ‘Something got a hold on me’ singer was tight-lipped about which songs she will be performing, there was no mistaking her enthusiasm.
“I am so excited to be a part of this prestigious event,” she told Observer. “It speaks volumes for me as a woman and other Caribbean women around the world; we are able to do what we want to do as long as we put our minds to it – along with hard work.”
Harris, born to a Jamaican father and Indian mother, will also become the first female US Vice President when she is sworn in shortly after President-elect Joe Biden on January 20.
“The gender gap is so huge and we are able to cut through boundaries – we just have to make sure that when we get there we come together as women, as black people, to celebrate. And so it is celebration time and I am going to be doing my part on behalf of Antigua and Barbuda,” Peters added.
The show – being staged the day before Martin Luther King Jr Day – was initiated by Invest Caribbean, an investment agency founded by Felicia Persaud, and is being presented under the theme, ‘Celebrating #CaribbeanAmericanKamala’.
It will be hosted by the first black woman to appear in a James Bond movie, Trina Parks, whose roots extend to Barbados through her mother and to Antigua through her grandparents, along with soca star Kirk Brown.
Also set to perform is Jamaican dancehall star Flourgon, Barbadian soca singer Edwin Yearwood, Jamaica’s Fab Five Band, Guyana’s Menes De Griot and Shanto, and St Vincent and the Grenadines’ Frankie McIntosh, among others.
Speakers will include Caribbean-born US Congressman Adriano Espaillat, Jamaica’s Prime Minister Andrew Holness, Vice Chancellor of the University of the West Indies Sir Hilary Beckles, along with a host of other dignitaries and organisation representatives.
Harris herself is scheduled to close the event with a message of her own to Caribbean people across the world.
Persaud, a journalist and entrepreneur, said, “This is a historic moment for us as Caribbean people in these United States who have been here since slavery, and we are hopeful that VP-elect Harris will represent the best interest of all Americans, inclusive of those who share her Caribbean ancestry.”
She added, “America and the Caribbean region have always enjoyed a positive working diplomacy and we trust this will be reinforced now we have the US’ first black Caribbean American VP in the White House.”