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Los Alumnos de San Juan on stage
Los Alumnos de San Juan on stage

Los Alumnos de San Juan cops Parang Finals Reporters
Event Date: December 13, 2008
Posted: January 07, 2009

The National Parang Finals held by National Parang Association of Trinidad and Tobago (NPATT) came to a thrilling finale on Saturday 13th December, 2008, at the Priority Mall Arima before a large crowd of Parang enthusiasts. In the night's competition the seven bands vying for honors were Paramininos, Amantes De Parranda, Los Alumnos de San Juan, Los Pastores, Los Amigos Cantadores, Voces Jovenes and La Familia de Rio Claro. Each band were required to perform three songs: an Annunciaton Song, A Nativity Song and a Tune of Choice.

After some technical glitches the show got going after 10 p.m. with two guest performances that warmed up the crowd. Runners-up Bishops/Trinity East High School and the Secondary School Parang Champions St. Augustine High School both gave excellent performances that showed that the future of Parang is indeed in good hands.

The competition was quite close and the audience truly appreciated the enthusiasm showed by the bands. Parang faithfuls danced in front of stage and throughout the venue as the sweet sounds of the cuatro and the box base harmonized with voices to produce sweet music that reverberated through the venue. The groups were well-attired and added choreography that spiced up their routines. When the final band exited the stage and the judges were tallying the points, Petit Valley-based band, Voces Jovenes, came back on the stage to entertain the audience. They proceeded to wow the audience with a pulsating Parang session that had the audience dancing and begging for more.

When the results were announced, it was Los Alumnos De San Juan, led by the honey-voiced Alica Jagassar, that walked away with the top honors edging Amantes De Parranda and Los Pastores into second and third place respectively. Los Alumnos De San Juan, who performed first and wowed the audience with their gold costumes, choreography, powerful vocals and their overall commanding performance truly deserved the top spot. They previously won the National Parang Finals in 1998, 1999, 2000, 2003 and 2004.

A special award was presented to Mrs. Granger, wife of the late Sidney Granger a Parang pioneer from the band La Familia de Rio Claro, in honor of his contributions to the Parang artform.

Full Results

Champion Band / Los Alumnos de San Juan
2nd place / Amantes De Parranda
3rd place / Los Pastores
4th place / Los Amigos Cantadores
5th place / Voces Jovenes
6th place / Paramininos
7th place / La Familia de Rio Claro

Tune of Choice Category

1st place tie / Amantes De Parranda and Los Alumnos de San Juan
3rd place / Los Amigos Cantadores
4th place / Los Pastores
5th place / Voces Jovenes
6th place / La Familia de Rio Claro
7th place / Paramininos

National Parang Finals 2008 in pictures: