The Phoenix â€“ October 2016
20 YEARS AS THE EYE OF ENTERTAINMENT
BIG NARSTIE MARK DWAYNE EXCLUSIVE WITH THE BRITISH RAP HEAVYWEIGHT
The Phoenix – October 2016
TV - Online - MAGAZINE /markdwaynehost
ne Mark Dway
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, Mark Walte
Mark Dwayne All Black Birthday 2016 “For me the all black was amazing - I just wanted to get my ravers that have been with me since 1997 and make them relive the days of how we use to party” 22 Supreme Cat Show 23-25 Hot Tub Living Expo
14 Kano 18 Spring King 19 Billy Talent 21 Michael Kiwanuka 22 Gorgon City 24 George The Poet 27 Lady Leshurr 29 JP Cooper
l Nickelback play the Genting Arena on the 14th October
BIRMINGHAM O2 ACADEMY
October 04 The Hunna 05 Fireball – Fuelling The Fire Tour 06 Louis Berry 07 The Spitfires 08 This is Madchester 11 Frankie Ballard 14 All Saints: Red Flag Tour 16 Jamie Lawson 20 Keywest 21 Lonely The Brave 24 Jake Bugg 26 Emma Blackery 29 Gehtika 30 The Lumineers
October 04 The Birthday Massacre 04 Feeder 07 AURORA 07 Kate Nash 08 Hot Dub Time Machine 10 Ady Suleiman 13 Akala: 10 Years of Akala Tour 13 Goo Goo Dolls
TOWN HALL & SYMPHONY HALL
October 08 Jean-Michel Jarre 12 Fifth Harmony 14 The Australian Pink Floyd Show 2016 15 Babbu Maan 17-18 Justin Bieber 19 Steel Panther 22 Frankie Gavin Vs Sam Eggington 25-30 Disney On Ice presents Frozen
October 05-09 Horse of the Year Show 14 Nickelback 21 Bad Company - Special guests Richie Sambora & Orianthi 22 Bear Grylls: Endeavour 24 Justin Bieber 26 Four Tops & The Temptations 29 Maxwell & Mary J Blige
October 07-09 Destination Star Trek Europe 11-16 Motorhome & Caravan Show 14-16 The Vaper Expo 19-23 Grand Designs Live 22-23 DIVE 2016
October 03 Tamsin Waley-Cohen In Recital (TH) 06 Four Last Songs (SH) 07 The Brummies 2016 (TH) 09 The Legend Of Zelda: Symphony Of The Goddesses - Master Quest (SH) 09+12 Romesh Ranganathan (TH) 11 Level 42 (SH) 13 Christy Moore (SH) 15 Tony Hadley (SH) 16 Jo Malone My Story (TH) 16 Jason Byrne (TH) 29 Steve Backshall’s Wild World (TH) 29 Miles Jupp (TH) 30 CBSO Youth Orchestra: The Wooden Prince (SH)
SLADE ROOMS, WOLVERHAMPTON
October 07 The Ruts DC (SR) 08 Garage Gathering (CH) 16 The Feeling (SR) 17 Bars and Melody (SR) 18 We Are Scientists (SR) 21 Babbu Man (CH) 22 Omid Djalili (CH) 23 MAGIC OF MOTOWN (CH) 25 Joe & Caspar (CH) 27 Russell Kane (WH) 30 Alien Ant Farm (SR) 31 Michael Portillo - Life: A Game Of Two Halves (WH)
0121 339 5885 or 0208 865 1922
The Phoenix – October 2016
l Sold a u n n A e h T
WOW! y t r a P y a e Birthd n y a w D k r Ma
IP magazine editor and DJ promoter Mark Dwayne brings the All Black roadblock. Over the last 20 years we have seen Mark bring colour theme parties like Blue and White, Black and White and Red and Black, but this year Mark decided to do one colour which was all black which is his favourite colour for many reasons. This night was for his supporters, a massive road block Birthday in September. Nearly 1000 guests were dressed in full black to celebrate and party in VIP Style at the Myyst Nightclub In Birmingham.
l Comedian White Yardie attends the All Black Party
The Street Cred magazine editor and DJ has always been known to put on massive and exclusive parties and to date this one has been the best this year. The All Black Event was highly anticipated as Mark announced earlier in the year that he was taking a break from the club scene to concentrate more on the corporate dinners, new album and tours in the UK and Abroad. But if you know Mark Dwayne he couldn’t leave this year without a swagger club party as this is what we know him for. “I don’t do club nights as regular as I used to” said Mark Dwayne “mainly because of my age and if I’m honest going out isn’t the same as back in the day but it was my birthday and I thought why not give it one more go this year and do a party for my friends that love Old Skool - but its gotta be all black” As you can see by the pictures 99 percent of the clients were dressed in Black if you were not then it was due to strict orders to not to have your pic taken. “Mark Walters of Aston
Villa has been supporting me for the last 19 years, it’s noted - Respect!” beamed Mark “Other celebrity guests included White Yardie and others attended the glamorous affair.” Over the last 20 years Mark Dwayne has been a trendsetter for VIP nightlife parties in the Midlands, his readers buy his magazines support him as a DJ and singer and all that is part of the Mark Dwayne Brand. He has often been hailed as the P Diddy of Birmingham but Mark states “I am simply me doing what I love for my supporters and all I aim to do in my life is put a smile on peoples face. “It turns me on that I am able to give people that escapism needed in their life for a few hours, I love to give people a big party and music is a great way to get everyone socializing and getting to know each other. “For me the all black was amazing - I just wanted to get my ravers that have been with me since 1997 and make them relive the days of how we use to party and it was so nice to see everyone here again and grown up, it’s been an amazing 20 years doing magazines and parties ’
Send in your stories to firstname.lastname@example.org
Grime Heavyweight’s Bass Defence League Skank Is Sweeping The Nation!
“To think I made this darnce at like 4 am in the morning drunk in my yard and to see so many people across the place doing it is crazy”
MARK DWAYNE EXCLUSIVE WITH THE BRITISH RAP HEAVYWEIGHT Homeland_A5_2aw.pdf
The Phoenix – October 2016
caught up with the hottest grime artist in UK right now who everybody loves. London Grime veteran Big Narstie met me at the Marriot Hotel in Birmingham before his Uni show to give Street Cred Magazine and TV the lowdown on his new album featuring some mega names and his new hit single BDL Skank which is creating a massive storm at festivals. If you know about Big Narstie he is one of the UKs greatest performers and his tracks always smash the raves and festivals. He is probably the most down to earth artist I have ever met thats doing it big in the music scene. This guy is good friends with Craig David and was the first grime artist to feature on Johnathon Ross show. Interviewing this guy you can tell all he wants is for the UK Grime scene to do well and open doors for as many people as he can.
MD: How is the response when you perform the tune? NARSTIE: It’s been mental to think I made this darnce at like 4 am in the morning drunk in my yard and to see so many people across the place doing it is crazy MD: That’s what’s needed in the grime scene, the fun element? NARSTIE: For sure, BDL ravers don’t do standing in
Narstie: I always say from you make the same music that I make we have to support each other whoever gets through like Skepta, Stormzy etc it opens the door for the whole scene and with great power comes great responsibility. MD: BDL Album is coming and its big I know, what kinda vybe we talkin here? NARSTIE: BDL album drops next year, Very Bipolar is my own computer game dropping next year, my android app dropping December, Uncle Pain dvd out now on bignarstie.com. MD: Who else you working with on the album? NARSTIE: Robbie Williams, Lady Leshurr, Tinie Tempah and many more.
MD: Easy bro, good to meet you thanks for the time NARSTIE: No worries fam big up Big Mikee in Birmingham. C
MD: Respect thats our grime king, so tell me the BDL Skank tune is explosive right now how you feel about the whole hype on it? NARSTIE: The BDL skank is doing really well fam, I had to embrace my Jamaican roots by having Supercat and I am riding with the flow fam its all happening.
the corner that’s dead! Man and woman are on Zumba behaviour on this song bruv [laughs] MD: Being with Craig David on that hit single “When the Bassline Drops” - how has that elevated your career? NARSTIE: What it done for me is it opened more international doors so big up Craig David man I mean he got the gyal all over the world. [laughs] MD: It was great Craig David came to street level it was about time wouldn’t you say?
MD: Wow you going in with the names bro mans with Robbie Williams thats mega! And Lady Leshurr thats a good look reppin our brum chick feeling that. NARSTIE: Of course, its English music bro. It’s all happening. See more of the Big Narstie interview on www.streetcredmagazine.com BDL skank out now, Follow Big Narstie on Facebook and Twitter Words: Mark Dwayne
The Phoenix â€“ October 2016
BLACK HISTORY y MONTH c a g e L e h T
Sisters are doing it for themselves!
Black History Month
elcome to our Black History Month supplement, where this year we are introducing you to the legacy of those who have passed. Though we respect our past heroes and foundation layers, we have to acknowledge those who have picked up the baton, to continue the work that those gone before us had started. In our Black History Month, we have selected a few of those dynamic individuals that has surpassed their ability to continue the work and walk the walk and talk the talk.
Our headliners, Platinum People is a business started by two powerful sisters within the community that has demonstrated true grit, passion devotion, determination and success. We salute them, and celebrate the youth of today and the inspiration and continuation of our next generation, in particular Janaih and Serena, and the lifelong commitment to serve with honour and selflessness like Rupert Phillips and Victor K Leigh. They should be commended and acknowledged in light of Black History Month.
BLACK HISTORY MONTH
The Phoenix – October 2016
l Murett and Georgina Mendez (centre) with staff members at Platinum People
Giving their students the
Platinum Package by Daniel Riley
hen you’re a young person who has just left school, the prospect of starting your future can be quite daunting. Platinum People, set up by sisters Georgina and Murett Mendez back
in 2002, looks to give people in that situation the guidance and education they need to continue on with their lives, whether that be to college, university or straight into employment. “Platinum People is about educating, supporting and shaping the future leaders of the city,” explains Georgina, “The occu-
l Georgina and Murett, sisters standing strong.
pational or technical area we’ve decided to work in is the trades, as we see the trades industry is a good skilled area for these kids to move forward to. “We empower our students to one day be the owner of their own company, in any area of trade, be it electrical, plumbing or motor vehicle.” Growing up, the girls went to Bournville Juniors and Kings Norton Girls School before heading out into industry, with Murret working at City Hospital, just a stones throw away from the current site of Platinum People, and Georgina in Social Services before both girls decided to go to Uni. Murett then worked as a training manager for a training company. It was actually while in that position in the run up to Christmas one year, that Murett stood up for the rights of the successful students that she had been working with in the face of discrimination and abuse from the owner over sending their exams to the awarding body to get the students their deserved qualification. Over that Christmas break, there was a lot of soul searching, and Murett came up with the idea of her and Georgina starting their
l Georgina and Murett Mendez in the Garage at Platinum People own training company. “Our Mom also say how distressed she was, and told us that she would support us both in setting this up if it was what we wanted to do – our Mom has been quite instrumental in everything we’ve done.” Their Mother and Father were also the ones that instilled in the young girls their work ethic; “We grew up in business, helping mum in the markets. She was the first black woman who sold green bananas and yam in the outdoor markets,” reminisced Murett, “We were used to being up really early in the morning, then out with her when she was selling all day.” When their Father was made redundant, their parents decided they wanted more, so they opened their own food shop in Sparkbrook on Walford Road, and were maybe the first or second food shop to open selling chicken. “We used to be known as the “Chicken Girls” as every Friday and Saturday, and every holiday we would be in there working away.” As you’d expect, Platinum People take on students from a wide range of backgrounds, cultures and abilities, but if the students are willing, and really want their qualification, they can really turn themselves around.
“We’ve started doing taster sessions, as at 16 or so, you don’t always know what you want to be or do at all, so our students can try their hand at plumbing, electrical, or automotive work to figure out what it is that they want to pursue.” Already an Ofsted Grade 2 Provider, the girls aren’t sitting back on their laurels, and have ambitions to move towards becoming a Grade 1 Provider, by developing their infrastructure, and upping the quality and provisions for the students. Achieving a whopping 85.5% pass rate this year, Platinum People is always looking to the future. “Locally, as a provider and nationally, we are above the national average, which is great, especially for a relatively small company competing in a very competitive marketplace.” Georgina and Murett took on the current site back in 2008, and decided it wasn’t fit for purpose. The garage was fine, but there was a car wash and a café attached to it. The boldly ripped everything down and rebuilt it from the ground up with our own design and layout to make the experience of learning more enjoyable. The pair now hope to expand on what they have, and grow the company
while maintaining the high levels of quality and service that they have become known for. “Our success has been down to the success of our staff, so we’d like thank all the staff we’ve ever had for all their hard work. We’d like to thank our Mom, who has helped us through tougher times,” Georgina smiled, “She’s always been there, praying with us, praying for us, and financial support too, we wouldn’t be where we are without her.” “I would like to say thank you also to the supporters who we may not know who are in the background and who we may not know on a personal level. Layota and Andre, our children are our number one supporters, they’ve been with us since the beginning and through the ups and downs, thanks also to my brother in law David, and to all of our family and friends.” “Give us a call, come and see us! We have open days every Wednesday at the Garage, we know everyone as individuals, and all the staff take the time to find out who you are, and to help you onto your next steps.” Whether you know what you want to do with your future or not, Platinum People is a brilliant place to check out.
The Phoenix â€“ October 2016
BLACK HISTORY MONTH
Sharing his knowledge and expertise with the world one book at a time
igerian-born Victor K Leigh has lived in the UK for over 40 years, with a considerable amount of that time working in the fields of sheltered housing and social care. Victor was called in for a period of 9 months maternity cover as a sheltered manager for the council, which soon turned into 6 years as a contractor in trouble shooting and manager; in that time, he noticed many things were happening. Sadly though, it came to a point where the council had to lay off most of the staff, before retaking some of them in, but as Victor was a contractor with them, there was no room for him, along with
n his book, General Guides to Management in Sheltered Housing, V.K. Leigh shares information that supports why he is one of the most experienced sheltered scheme managers to have the privilege working with older persons in the United Kingdom; through some of the larger housing organizations in the country; both in the private and public sectors. Combining the gift and years of practical experience and knowledge, Leigh will undoubtedly be ranked as a professional in this field. Leigh spends time looking for ways of improving the lifestyle and care for the older people with new ideas of how to better the field that he is so knowledgeable about. Leigh is
uides to Scheme Managers’ Operations explores how every housing-related organization has strategic equalities and visions for their tenants and also for themselves to guide them more positively. No individuals or groups should be at a disadvantage by reason of ethnicity, gender, sexual orientation, age, employment status, and religious beliefs. When a tenant moves into a sheltered housing scheme, a welcoming pack is given by the housing organization. In this pack, all important and immediate valuable information, including telephone numbers for services like repairs, are enclosed for the tenant’s convenience. The aim of every organization is about giving the best services and the best values that can be offered
nearly 100 others. Being at home looking for jobs, Victor decided to do something to keep me busy, and he found himself getting deeper and deeper into writing which resulted to these books and then at the same time he was helping to check peoples’ books (Proof-reading and editing) when they write too. Rather than writing works of fiction, detailing epic battles between the forces of good and evil with dragons thrown in for good measure, Victor started writing about what he knew, and what he was good at; Social Work and
a professional business manager, consultant in management training, computer systems analyst and a credit and financial analyst.
to their customers. Some organizations improve their services and will do everything within their knowhow with greater or less positive results.
Sheltered Housing Management. “I picked the topics from what happens around me. The first one I wrote was to do with the environment of sheltered housing for older people, which was The General Guide to Management in Sheltered Housing.” Victor is a Registered Consultant in Management Training, used to training people day in day out during his previous and present posts and sorting people out on the right path within the field, and had an epiphany moment, realising; “I said to myself, if I can talk to people, train them, and solve problems that were going on around the place, then why can’t I write it down to help more people?” “When working with vulnerable people, one’s task is
to support them by keeping them happy and comfortable; these elderly people are valuable, people who know about the country and make it what it is today dating back from the first and second world wars, people that need to be respected for who they are and what they have done in their lifetime.” “So I went into the management side of writing, which is where the second b o o k c a m e
to Z In Health & Social Care is an A-to-Z dictionary-type of glossary book that contains the everyday words and vocabulary used in the environments of social care, sheltered housing, extra care, social housing, and related environments—words that people use every day and are taken for granted without thinking about what they mean or represent. Most of the staffs, clients, patients, and visitors use these words so frequently and indiscriminately that, to some people, they have lost the true meanings and understandings. This book is of educational value to training establishments and colleges. It is a source of reference when unsure about the terms of words that are being used
he roles of the modern sheltered scheme manager have changed drastically. Modernization in sheltered housing has created new rules in the field of sheltered housing and also to the modern sheltered scheme manager. The sheltered scheme managers of today must be well mannered, cultured, educated, and must be computer literate; more so are the expectations that this book brings into light the awareness behind the facts. The roles of the modern sheltered scheme manager are more complicated than ever and there are many dos and don’ts that need to be registered in peoples’ minds as this book is being read. General Extra Care: The Full Facts educates anyone and everyone that reads it, of the inner
from. It shows how the management side of things are run from within. In the process of writing it, I found myself creating some appropriate forms which were approved for the various purpose, the council used these forms, and it became the accepted general form being used at the time.” “Behind each of the books I have put the information for tenants and their families as an awareness for information vital for them to know. For example, when tenants/clients pass away, the council don’t actually release some of the possessions immediately, and you must have a will, else there will be some complications for your family.” More recently, Victor has published his 2 newest books in March this year; ‘A to Z in Health & Social Care’ is a dictionary of words found in the health and social care sectors and ‘Why Me? -respecting mul-
or pronounced. It is important to realize that this is not a textbook but only a reference source—that is, a dictionary.
n a world full of confusion, people may find themselves thinking without consideration for others. V. K. Leigh hopes to rectify that with his new book, Why Me? Leigh confronts how environment, culture, and religion can affect everyday life and reasoning. This book of knowledge is written as a source of awareness to the various cultures in the world and how their beliefs influence the lives of the groups within that culture and its environments. This book makes us aware that the world is a place of multicultural society, where everyone needs to understand the environment in which they live. In Why Me?, the contents go back to the early century when bravery was the order of the day. This book contains knowledge-based information, giving an in-depth history and enlightening the zeal of everyone who reads it.
working procedures and abilities of the sheltered scheme managers. This book is an educational material that can be used to train/teach a sheltered scheme manager to be.
The Phoenix – October 2016
ticulturalism’. “To be honest, ‘Why Me?’ just happened. In my quiet moment, sat down and a lot of things were just running through my head. Seeing the way people are mistreating each other, and especially women in the third world countries, prompted me to write this particular one.” “I looked at countries like Africa, the Zulu King, Nigerian Kings, Egyptian Queens, and some other rulers along West Africa, where you had 40 women who made the army to protect the King, and I also talk about discrimination and bullying too.” For Victor, ‘Why Me?’ seemed to come down to respect. “The world we live in today, a lot of people don’t respect each other, whether it be due to religion, culture or caste. In heaven there is no religion, I believe that God created man equal, and if that is so, everyone will stand before him at the end of their days.” “Hopefully people will think twice before they open their mouth and disrespect another person’s religion.” Food for thought: - For any young person wanting to go into writing, Victor has some wise words for you. “Before you do, make sure it is what you want to do, and make sure you have that zeal to want to write. Don’t go into it because you see someone else writing and just think “I want to do that”. Let it be your passion. When you’re writing, let it become a part of you and when it becomes a part of you, you will love whatever you’re doing.”
This book is written with the intent to share wisdom, knowledge, and information on world cultural heritage; explain how culture and environment affect our behaviors and thoughts; discuss how people regard and talk to each other; and delve into their mental reasoning and personalities.
Victors first three books are available through Xlibris Publishing at the link above, and his most recent two books are available now through Author House.
The Phoenix – October 2016
Holiday, Travel & Overseas News
SOTIC 2016 in Barbados - What an Experience
by Mark Dwayne
was told throughout my life many times that I haven’t had a true holiday until I have experienced sun sea and sand, so when the opportunity came for me to review the SOTIC (State Of The Industry Conference) where 52 countries come together to highlight the new attractions of their islands and have a world class tour of Barbados, like any journalist I grabbed the opportunity with both hands. This year was my first visit to the Caribbean, Street Cred Magazine featuring the lifestyle and travel section Swish along with the BBC and the world press were invited to a luxurious week tour of Barbados courtesy of the Caribbean Tourism Organization and the Barbados Tourism Marketing Inc. I was well prepared with my attire, boasting my shorts, white vest, pumps, and snazzy snapbacks ready for that
white sand beach and powder blue skies experience. It was an 8 hour flight to get to the other side of the world which they call paradise on earth, as the plane landed I could not wait to stretch my arms and take in the sun. When I stepped off the plane feeling the blazing heat beating down on my skin was brilliant. We were escorted from the airport to our Hilton hotel resort courtesy of the Barbados Tourism Board, the chauffeured drive went through the most amazing scenery. I filmed the whole journey and took so many selfies on my android phone just to have evidence that I was now in paradise. What amazed me was the view of the tropical palm trees amongst amazing large detached houses driving through the neighbourhoods. I hadn’t even reached my hotel and already I was saying to myself I want
to live and die here. Yes Barbados is a beauty to the eye! As we got to the Hilton resort hotel we were greeted by two wonderful hostesess who said kindly ‘Enjoy your stay in Barbados’ while handing us both a tall glass of exotic rum punch.
Continued on Page 24
STATE OF THE TOURISM INDUSTRY CONFERENCE 2016
The Phoenix – October 2016
he message which policy makers, players, and public and private sector representatives involved in the Tourism Industry in the Caribbean took away from CEO of Sandals Resorts International Adam Stewart when he addressed them at the State of the Tourism Industry Conference in Barbados was that “Sticking with what has worked” will not cut it. The 35-year-old Jamaican-born and raised billionaire delivered a keynote address on the theme “Honouring our Legacy and Defining our Future.” Left up to him, he would like to see tourism managed in a much more innovate manner. He said his role on the SOTIC stage at The Hilton Hotel was to speak to the visionaries. Those, he noted who think they have a better plan for the industry. “At its core, exploitation is about sticking with what has worked; its
Adam Stewart enco in managing the To
l Adam Stewart, CEO of Sandals Resorts International giving his Keynote Spee reliance upon old certainties and staying within our comfort zone. Like for us in the Caribbean, the ease of selling a traditional sun, sand ad sea experience; warm vacations that people know,” Stewart recognizes.
His advice is simply to change the approach to the industry, because to him, “the scales are tipped too much to business as usual.” Consideration has to be given to the factors affecting the industry, Stewart warned, referring to ad-
l Johnson JohnRose, Communications Specialist, CTO
l Grenada Minister for Tourism and Civil Aviation
l Marcia McLaughlin, Editor-In-Chief of The Phoenix Newspaper with Carol Hay CTO’s Director of Marketing, Europe (left) and Nevis Tourism Authority’s Devon Liburd
l Adam Stewart, CEO of Sandals Resorts International, with Mark Dwayne, Editor of Street Cred Magazine and Swish Holiday and Lifestyle
STATE OF THE TOURISM IND
The Phoenix – October 2016
STATE OF THE TOURISM INDUSTRY CONFERENCE 2016
ourages innovation ourism Industry
business as usual.” Innovation is required; not complacency “We’ve added more hotel rooms along our full shores and added more lifted. We’ve reduced rates in the shoulder season and renovated. We’ve pushed wide white sandy beaches, blue waters and warm days. You know what? Over these last decades I think we’ve done a hell of a job. Beyond the current implications of Zika, the Brexit, Canadian stagnation, a US Presidential Election, the recent loss of the travel dollar to the Rio Games, the macro outlook for the Caribbean remains strong and so it’s easy to become complacent. To continue to exploit what has worked so well for so long,” he observed. In fact it has worked so well that the Caribbean Tourism Organisation is projecting 30 million international visitors to the Caribbean for 2016.
vances in technology, emerging markets, health concerns and fluctuating world economies. The CEO of one of the world’s leading resort companies recalled his father’s attitude towards business, always wanting to exceed
expectations, whether he was selling appliances or hotel rooms. “It’s about having the courage to dream big … for far too long however this has not been the case. With every good intention we have overwhelmingly pursued
l Adam Stewart, CEO of Sandals Resorts International, with Marcia McLaughlin, Editor-In-Chief of The Phoenix Newspaper
DUSTRY CONFERENCE 2016 l Sharon Flax Brutus, BVI Director of Tourism and Joy
Jibrilu, Director General of Bahams Ministry of Tourism
l Marcia McLaughlin Editor-In-Chief of The Phoenix Newspaper with The Honourable Obediah H. Wilcombe, M.P., Minister of Tourism for the Bahamas,(left) and Cardigan Connor Parliamentary Secretary for Anguilla
STATE OF THE TOURISM INDUSTRY CONFERENCE 2016 Continued From Page 21
It was then I thought this is going to be an epic trip. So we checked into the hotel and within the hour I was confidently topless luxuriating on the beach with my cocktail , yes we were settled and had the first buffet meal over looking the beautiful white sand beach. It was a good start to the trip. The whole thing kicked off the following day when we were picked up at 6.30am to go to the press launch, where we received an in depth introduction from some of the islands, where we as journalist started to get a feel of what as to come for the duration of our stay. After a day of preparation and information, the evenings event took place at an $88million mansion, with a restroom that was so lush you didn’t want to use it, instead taking photos of it. Boasting multiple swimming pools, cinema room, snooker table and all the mod cons, with a backdrop of dignitaries letting their hair down and enjoying the delectable delights that tantalised your tastebuds. The next day was another early start
on an all day Rum Tour of Barbados, following breakfast at the Hilton and a factsheet of the Barbados attractions delivered by Billy Griffiths, followed by a mouth watering, knee trembling, anticipation growing pitch of Barbados by Dr Kerry Hall. The tour included a drive past of Simon Cowells multi-million dollar holiday home, Rihanna’s old neighbourhood and the estate where Tiger Woods got married. We stopped at the Rum Shacks and the Sugar Cane Mill as part of the Spice and Rum your, including a legendary massive warehouse built in the 1600’s. The group met with locals who had prepared a local delight of the island, Souse which is a dish of pickled pork and sweet potato. The trip came to a stop at a local restaurant, for the main meal. The next 3 days were dedicated to the conference itself, interspersed with awards dinners, and networking, before the final night at a Concord bar. The bar was open all night with all bar tenders dressed in Air wear, a free world buffet ranging from Chinese
The Phoenix – October 2016
SOTIC 2016 in Barbados What an Experience Italian, Carribean and more. All in all, we would like to thank the Caribbean Tourism Organisation and Barbados Tourism Marketing Inc for an epic SOTIC 2016, where I was told there was an increase in numbers
of 500 delegates from previous years. All I am waiting for now is my invitation to the 50th Anniversary of Independence, so I can experience the uniqueness in celebration that Kerry Hall sold me at the beginning
of the trip! A big thank you to Ginger Tree of Birmingham and La Romana Jewels #27 Broad Street, Bridgetown Barbados, dealers of fine jewellery - 436-6623.
Barbados: The Rum Nation
l Marcia McLaughlin, Editor-In Brenton Henry, Director of New
arbados has something else to offer other than some of the best white sand beaches in the Caribbean and luxurious oceanfront resorts. The lush West Indian nation is touted as the birthplace of rum, having produced the world’s oldest liquor – Mount Gay Rum. Dubbed the rum island, it offers over 15 brands. Old Brigand and Mount Gay are the most popular, according to the bar owner of Sunset Vybz Rum Shop, Dana Knight. Her bar is among 1500 rum shops which can be found across the island. The visit to her bar was part of a Rum Shop Tour which the Barbados Tourism Marketing Inc treated visiting journalists and travel writers to, attending the State of the Tourism Industry Conference. A rich rum history It is believed that the story of rum was founded in 1493 on the 280-acre Mount Gay Rum Estate. But it wasn’t until 1703 that the Mount Gay Commercial Rum Distillery was established, Mount Gay’s Brand Ambassador for Barbados
and the Eastern Caribbean Darrio Prescod recounted during a tour at the distillery. Then, Barbados was the hub for the sugar trade in the West Indies. It’s no wonder why the rum industry is booming there, as one of the largest producers of sugar cane in that region. Molasses - the main ingredient of rum – is made from sugar, and Barbados is claiming that its sugar is among the finest in the world. Prescod said what sets the Mount Gay Distillery apart from others is their distillation procedure, adding “many countries opt for one distillation process,” while Mount Gay has two unique distillation methods – the copper pot still (traditional method) and the column still. The Copper pot rum features complex, interwoven notes of chocolate, coconut and almonds, while the Column still rum is light-bodied with a short, crisp finish highlighted by floral and sweet fruit notes. Named after Sir John Gay Alleyne, the first manager of the distillery upon the request of the estate’s owner
ravel media from around the world were recognized for their excellence in journalism at the Barbados Tourism Media Awards at the Fairmont Royal Pavilion on the Platinum Coast. Created by Barbados Tourism Marketing Inc. (BTMI), the ceremony, themed ‘Recognizing Excellence in Global Coverage of Destination Barbados,’ which coincided with the Caribbean Tourism Organisation, State of the Industry Conference, was produced by the BTMI in recognition of the island’s 50th anniversary as an independent nation.
John Sober in the 1700s, the company has nine types of liquors to date. History will also show that Businessman Aubrey Ward turned operations up a notch when he bought the estate in the 1900s. He and his business partner John Hutson introduced Mount Gay Rum to the international market.
Today, the France-based liquor company Remy Cointreau owns Mount Gay Rum. Visitors can delight in experiencing Mount Gay’s operations during one of three tours offered by the company: the Signature Tour for US$10, Cocktail Tour for $US50 and a Buffet Lunch Tour for$US62.
The Phoenix – October 2016 Page 25
STATE OF THE TOURISM INDUSTRY CONFERENCE 2016
Barbados: a top vacation destination for the British will add additional service from Manchester and they will do that in April of 2017,” Griffith explained. From diversifying its tourism product from its ‘sun, sea, and sand’ niche to emerging niches like Voluntourism, Genealogy Tourism and Astro-Tourism, those responsible for managing the sector do not doubt international visitors will prefer Barbados as one of the choices in the Caribbean for their holidays. A big selling factor
n-Chief of The Phoenix Newspaper and ws, Observer Media Group, Antigua & Barbuda
Out of the 53 submitted entries from Canada, the USA, Europe and the UK, Canada copped the most top awards. Britney Hope who was present at the dinner won the category So You Know Your Stuff - Best Feature Article in a Trade Publication. Also present, Cara McLeay in Yup! You Told ‘Em! - Best Story by a Blogger copped this award with her piece “Barbados Diary.” With a story entitled ‘5 Reasons To Have Your Wedding In Barbados,’ Mara Sofferin took home the award in How Can This Knot Be Love?- Best Story on Romance; while Michael McCarthy hailing from
he homeland of the current hottest female R&B singer, Rihanna is considered a top destination for British vacationers. The United Kingdom market is a big deal for the independent Commonwealth nation of Barbados, which sells itself as offering ‘more than just sun, sea and sand.’ Of all the Eastern Caribbean countries, Barbados is the only one of which the United Kingdom is its number one tourism source market, according to that country’s Tourism Minister, Richard Sealy. He told international and regional media at the State of the Tourism Industry Conference hosted in Barbados in September that Barbadian tourism authorities will continue to strengthen their marketing in the UK.
More UK visitors expected “United Kingdom pleasingly continues to show growth. We’re at 2.7 percent ahead of last year … as a matter of fact I think by yearend 2016 we anticipate a marginal growth of just over two percent from the UK,” Chief Executive Officer of the BTMI Billy Griffith told the media. At the end of the year, Barbados hopes it can attract 600,000 international visitors. This will be record-breaking if it succeeds. There’s also been a boost in flights on major UK air carriers. “Three years ago British Airways had nine flights a week; we’re now up to 13 flights a week during the peak the winter months, and they will be adding this service also in November. Virgin Atlanctic has also announced that they
piece dubbed ‘Elle Voyage Barbados’ and Doug Wallace from La Carte was not present, however, after winning the Shaken Not Stirred - Epicurean Excellence Media Award category with his entry ‘Eating Your Way Around Barbados, One Food Stand At a Time’ he mentioned in his acceptance video he remarked that “he can’t wait to eat his way around the island again.” Jon Hawkins was the lone UK finalist and won his category Spoken Like a True Bajan! - Best Feature Article in a Consumer Publication with a piece entitled, ‘Rum’s The Word.’ Meanwhile, Sangita Chandra of ABC Boston won favour with the judges with their broadcast piece titled, ‘Seaduced and Fish Fry, Barbados Pleasures, Barbados Roots, Barbados Art’ in the category Golden Mic - Best Feature Broadcast. CEO of BTMI, Billy Griffith, paid special thanks to all the journalists who took the time to write on Barbados and enter the first ever awards. He also noted; “These
Oistins; that is a greatest example of one of our biggest attractions in Barbados and it’s a community attraction and you can get food and observe cultures, listen to music and just interact with our Barbadian people. It is probably the most popular activity on the island,” boasted Dr. Kerry Hall, CEO of the Barbados Tourism Product Authority. Words: Edona Jno Baptiste
l Marcia McLaughlin, Editor-In-Chief of The Phoenix Newspaper and Mark Dwayne Editor of Street Cred Magazine and Swish Holiday and Lifestyle
BTMI hosts inaugural Barbados Tourism Media Awards at SOTIC The Province came out on top in #NoFilter - Best Photo in Conjunction With a Feature Article with his ‘Making Friends in Bridgetown Marketplace’ article. Editor and freelance journalist, Violaine CharestSigouin, from ELLE Quebec won the category Is That An Accent? - Best Feature by Foreign Journalist in Foreign Media with a well written
This island paradise in the Caribbean’s Lesser Antilles is also proud of two major feats, boasting that it is the culinary capital of the Caribbean and the place where rum was produced. “From our fantastic world class restaurants right down to our street food and everything in between … we sell great food and that is the area we are definitely going to expand on because it’s one of the fastest growing area in tourism right now… I’m sure you know of
awards are the start of many to come and we encourage each of you to keep up the excellent work in the promotion of the Barbados brand.”
Carter Cops Inaugural Heritage Award
This elegant evening, packed with cocktails, a delectable Bajan-inspired four-course dinner by chef Kirk Kirton, and sweet musical symphonies, climaxed with veteran Barbadian journalist, Gercine Carter being conferred with the inaugural Heritage Award - Exceptional National Coverage by a Local Journalist. In reading the citation, Parliamentary Secretary in the Ministry of Tourism, Senator Irene Sandiford-Garner, recognized Carter’s 49-year career in journalism, much of which has been spent raising awareness for the tourism sector. Carter, who was also the first public relations manager at the Hilton Barbados and has been writing a social column since 1987 for The Nation covering broad areas including her old love “tourism”.
BLACK HISTORY MONTH
The Phoenix – October 2016
The sky’s the limit for young rising star F
by Daniel Riley
or the last two and a half years, a young girl from Dudley has been following her dream, soaring up the competitive ranks of the freestyle dance scene. Eleven-year-old Janaih Rattray started dancing after her mother, C a r o l e Johnson, was given a flyer inviting children to dance at a school called Touch Of Class, with the first ‘taster’ lesson being free. At the time, Janaih had just lost her Uncle, and both were unsure whether it was right to be doing something like this so soon after, but after a lot of discussion, they decided it was time. Although a shy girl by nature, Janaih quickly took to dancing during her first lesson at Russels Hall, which brought her to the attention of some of the staff there instantly. “A lady there called Hayley Massey came up to me after the lesson had finished,” explained mum Carole, “and she asked me about Janaih, how long she’d been dancing for, and told me in no uncertain terms ‘She could be really really good at this.’“. A bit taken aback by what she’d been told, Carole took the week to think about it all, and when it came around to the next lesson, Janaih couldn’t wait to go back, which Carole has supported wholeheartedly. “She absolutely loved it, and the rest is history
really!” Practicing one day a week, alongside her schoolwork, Janaih quickly got to grips with the ins and outs of freestyle dancing, and after only 12 weeks, Carole was taken aside once again, this time to suggest that Janaih was allowed to compete in competitions.
“ N o w there are children at the school, who Janaih quickly surpassed, who have been dancing for 4 or 5 years and were still classed as beginners” Carole continued, “so to be asked to compete so early on was a real shock!” So with extra help from the teacher at the time, Janiah went to her first ever competition, with no expectations on her. She won dancing the ‘Slow’. “I was so proud,” beamed Carole, “being so young and so new to dancing, I couldn’t believe it!” There are two types of freestyle dancing, as Janaih explained; “Fast is really quick and energetic, but Slow you take your time and be precise.” There are 5 levels, or tiers of ability in the freestyle dancing scene, going from Beginner, to Starter, Intermediate, then Champ and finally Premier Champion at the top of the girls group. All of these levels exist within each of the age groups, Under 4, U6, U8,
l Above and bottom left, Janaih in full flow during a competition l Below: Just some of the trophies that Janaih has won in just 2.5 years.
U10, U12, U14 To increase from one level to the next, each child has to lose 3 ‘lives’ by placing first or sometimes second place (depending on the number of dancers in the competition), 3 times at each level. From the first day stepping foot into a dance studio, Janaih climbed the ranks to reach Champ in just 6 months. “I love dancing to the freestyle music,” smiled Janaih “and I like doing the spot dances w h e r e I get to do the big flips!” Competitions take place all around the country, from the Tower Ballroom in Blackpool, to venues in Wales, Manchester, Birmingham, London and more, with the big one “The Worlds” being held annually. You have to qualify to go to The Worlds, and last year Janaih didn’t just make it to Worlds, she made it all the way to the Quarter Finals, pretty good for a dancer who despite recently becoming a Premier Champion still has a
lot to learn, even about the basics due to her meteoric rise. Emma Crystal Rose is now sponsoring Janaih, sponsoring the costumes for her solo performances in Fast, and she gets some absolutely amazing costumes. Touch of Class merged with Gemini Dance School in Redditch, so for the last 2 years, the pair travel to Redditch every week to practice, the kind of hard work and determination that they’d like to see more of from other young people, and especially their parents pushing them to stretch themselves and try more thing. “I’m extremely proud, looking back to where her journey started and to where she is now,” said Carole with a smiling glance over to her daugh-
ter, “She makes me smile every time we go to a comp, whether she makes the finals or not, she still smiles. It’s not always about winning, and she does know that.” “She’s just gone up to secondary school, but her primary school teachers told me that this girl came out of herself over the last year of primary school. She was quiet and hard working, but now the dancing is reflecting back into how she acts and interacts.” “I’d thoroughly recommend it to any young girls or boys, it’s a great experience with amazing people around you. Just give it a chance!” This is obviously just the beginning for the 11-year-old, but keep an eye on this little winner.
The Phoenix – October 2016
Poetry In Motion Birmingham’s Young Poet Laureate comes to the end of her tenure
by Daniel Riley
oetry. It’s an area of English that many have tried, and failed to master during their school days, but for one Birmingham schoolgirl, it has become a passion that was rewarded with one of the highest honours over the last 2 years. Serena Arthur was only 11 years old, when at St Chad’s Primary School, a poem she wrote on the topic of ‘War Torn Countries’ was subsequently sent to and praised by her headteacher, before being published in the St Chad’s Cathedral Magazine. A few years later after entering, and winning, her first major competition, through a librarian at her local Library, Serena entered herself into the competition to become Birmingham’s Young Poet Laureate. Although she made it through to the shortlist of 12 young people, unfortunately she only came second. “They said that my poem was the strongest in the competition, but they judge on the poem, the performance and the personal state-
ment,” explained Serena, “and as that was my first time ever on a stage I think that let it down.” The youngster, who hails from Jamaican and Barbadian heritage, was undeterred, and reapplied the very next year, this time, beating out all competition to become Birmingham’s Young Poet Laureate, which she has now held for 2 years. As Birmingham’s Young Poet Laureate, Serena has had a number of duties during her term, including visiting local schools and leading poetry workshops, commissioned pieces of poetry, and performances at events. “It’s been inspiring for me to go into schools and see the children become inspired and excited about poetry. Usually when they hear a poet is coming in they’re expecting someone much older than them that they can’t really relate to. “A lot of times the teachers have told me how coming into it they’d been dreading the poetry workshop, but after doing the session the children have all been inspired to write their own poetry.” “My first commission was in a deaf school
in Birmingham, so not only was it my first time in front of a class of children, but I had someone interpreting too. Serena has continued with her engagements, despite keeping up with her college studies, in which she gained an A*,an A and a B, giving her the opportunity to read English at Oxford University, where she will start at in October. “I’ve done an event for Holocaust Memorial Day, last February where I wrote a commissioned poem for that, and stand up on stage with a holocaust survivor that lives in Birmingham, hear her story and then share the poem that I’d written. “That was really hard knowing that she had actually lived through what I was writing about, and that I could never really understand it all.” To young budding poets, Serena had these words of wisdom; “There are not as many rules to poetry as there seems. It’s hard to teach something that is so free, when you learn it at school teachers will put certain rules in like it has to rhyme, or sound a certain way. “But when you’re actually writing poetry, it can be free verse or anything. Don’t restrict yourself to that. Writing your feeling and emotions into something that is short and succinct is an amazing way to start. “Poetry isn’t something old that people don’t connect to anymore, there is a lot of poetry that people can relate to easily, a lot of contemporary poets that anyone can connect to.” Now at the end of her term as Birmingham’s Young Poet Laureate, Serena is to pass the baton onto her successor at a ceremony as part of the literature festival. The articulate and confident young lady hopes to one day have her own poetry book, and her work has already been requested by the schools she has visited. With everything that Serena has done these last two years, her father Grantley Arthur is understandably proud. “I am extremely proud of her, I take her to all of her performances and just be there to encourage her,” he beamed, “It’s an enormous achievement as she didn’t go to a private school, she went to St Chads, an inner city school, and then on to Small Heath, again an inner city school. “She is loved wherever she performs and it just makes me so proud.” Despite passing on the baton, Serena’s work does not stop there; “Even though my role has finished, I’ll still be doing bookings and commissions for special occasions, especially during the holidays when I’m back from Oxford, and I’m performing at the London School of Economics at the end of the month.” It would seem that the world is Serena’s oyster and if she carries on with her life with the hard work and dedication that she is already showing, she will be a huge success in whatever she does.
BLACK HISTORY MONTH
Afro Caribbean Entertainment Committee invites you to a
Black History Night of Celebration Food & Entertainment Open mic session
Finger buffet, Light Refreshment & Licensed bar
Music by resident DJ DRB
Dress to Impress
Traditional Costume African, Caribbean, Asian
5 £ 29th October 2016 Entry Start 7pm till late Telephone Ina on
07853 364 154
or Email : email@example.com
West Bromwich African Caribbean Resource Centre Thomas Street, West Bromwich, B70 6LY
BLACK HISTORY MONTH
The Phoenix – October 2016
Rupert Phillips – A Man for All Reasons
l Rupert with his wife Jenny (Pepsi Poet) and daughters Melsadie and Dionne
by Steve Williams
een at many a leading community events, public and political occasions, Rupert Phillips is seen by many as the ‘go to’ man to make sure all runs smoothly, correct and on time. A native of Jamaica, the socially approachable 72-year-old has rubbed shoulders with prime ministers representatives of Her Majesty the Queen and other leading lights of home and abroad as he stands steadfast as a man of principle, fortitude, pride and immense dignity. From his place of birth, in Westmoreland, through his early days living in the UK, in Oldbury, in the West Midlands, to today as a ‘son’ of Birmingham, he has often been
seen as the man ideal to advocate, at all levels, for whatever the occasion requires. Since arriving in Britain as a 17-year-old in 1962, he undertook a variety of factory-based jobs whilst in the early 1970s to eighties, also working voluntarily with the Sandwell West Indian and Afro Caribbean Association as adviser and committee member. “I’ve always worked since coming to the UK,” he says. “And whilst doing so, I was always looking to better myself.” With that, in the 1990s, he went on to work as a Building and Maintenance Supervisor, for Birmingham City Councils Probation Service, taking young people to and from court whilst advising them, where and when appropriate, and taking them on activities to open
l Rupert with his wife Jenny (Pepsi Poet) and Uncle Alvin Barrett
their minds; “I always found myself advising these young people. “In being a ‘people person’ would lead to my ’calling’ in what I do today.” A committed member of the Association of Jamaican Nationals (Birmingham) for the past 15 years, Phillips was a Deputy Welfare Officer; visiting fellow members who, through illness, death, or simply for company, needed someone to talk to – to advise them; “That was, and still is, enlightening and fulfilling,” he says. More recently, he’s better known as a chauffeur, driving dignitaries including Jamaican High Commissioners, past and present and other Ministers. During Birmingham City Council’s bid to host the Jamaican Track
and Field teams training camp in the city – pre London Olympics 2012 – it was he who chauffeured Olivia ‘Babsy’ Grange, Jamaican Minister of Sport, and bid coordinator, Beverley Lindsay OBE OD, Deputy Lieutenant of the West Midlands, around to the number of high-pressured meetings that would seal what was a successful period for all concerned. Married, to wife Jenny – with daughters Melsadie and Dionne, Rupert, who spent 5 years as a licensee for the now defunked Club Paradise, in the city, is enjoying his retirement whilst still being active with the AJN and being seen at a number of prominent events up and down the. He’s a man for all people – and a man for all reasons.
l Rupert Phillips
l Rupert receiving an award from Pamela Johnson, wife of His Excellency Anthony Johnson, High Commissioner of Jamaica and Beverly Lindsay OBE OD DL from the Association of Jamaica Nationals, Birmingham UK
The Phoenix – October 2016
n order to mine for gold, greedy industrialist Bartholomew Bogue seizes control of the Old West town of Rose Creek. With their lives in jeopardy, Emma Cullen and other desperate residents of Rose Creek turn to bounty hunter Sam Chisolm (Denzel Washington) for help. Chisolm begins recruiting an eclectic group of gunslingers to help take on Bogue and his ruthless henchmen and bring peace to the town and it's people once more. However, with a deadly showdown on the horizon against an army that completely outnumbers them, the seven mercenaries and the residents of Rose Creek soon find themselves fighting for more than just their town. Antoine Fuqua, director of Training Day, Olympus Has Fallen, The Equalizer and Southpaw, returns to the big screen with his latest action-extravaganza, The Magnificent Seven - a remake-come-reimagining of John Sturges classic Western of the same name. Fuqua has proven himself time and time again when it comes to action, so it's no surprise that he absolutely nails The Magnificent Seven, delivering enormous, fastpaced set-pieces, some gorgeous scenery and a great cast. However, he also seems unsure of exactly what he's trying to deliver; a moody, violent Western
wORDS by antony brown
in the vein of Sergio Leone or a grand, adventurous Western of the John Ford variety and because of this, there are some tonal issues. On occasion, The Magnificent Seven switches from tongue-incheek humour to harrowing violence quicker than you can say "yee-haw!" and it can be a little jarring, but you’ll be having so much fun that the overall experience doesn't suffer too much because of it. The film opens with a lengthy introduction to the villain, Bartholomew Bogue (Peter Sarsgaard) and wastes no time in making you despise everything about him; which is helpful considering you don't see him again for a large portion of the movie while Denzel is rounding up his band of badasses. As for the ensemble itself, Fuqua managed to land quite an impressive cast. Alongside Washington, you have the likes of Chris Pratt, Ethan Hawke, Vincent D'Onofrio and Bryan Hun-Lee, as well as a couple of relative newcomers in Manuel Garcia-Rulfo and Martin Sensmeier. Each character has their own distinct personality, but the screenplay limits them, forcing some to emerge as nothing more than two-dimensional caricatures. The closest The Magnificent Seven comes to well-defined characters is Sam Chisholm (Denzel Washington) the mysterious bounty-hunter with a secret and
The Magnificent Seven Goodnight Robicheaux (Ethan Hawke) the legendary war-hero who plays up his status even though he suffers with PTSD. Chris Pratt also stands out as Josh Faraday, the cocky and highly inappropriate drunken-comedian of the group. All of the Seven are fun in their own way, but some just aren’t given as much time to shine as others, but The Magnificent Seven is definitely one of those movies where every member of the audience will have a different favourite character, which is always fun to discuss amongst friends. Once the action starts, it doesn’t stop and it is fast, furious and endlessly fun. It does however suffer from an eye-rolling sequence in which the good guys get the upper hand, so the bad-guys decide to bring out
EGX 2016 E
GX 2016 took place at Birmingham’s NEC from the 22nd to the 25th September, bringing with it a whole host of AAA and Indie titles, as well as a large selection of hardware, peripherals and merchandise. From the Cosplay Stage to tournaments in a wide variety of games across the 4 days, as well as celebrity meet & greets from Syndicate, The Yogscast and more, there was something for everyone, whether you’re a PC gamer, Console
Gamer or Mobile Gamer. One of the standout Indie titles at EGX this year was the bright and bubbly Mekazoo. Mekazoo is a love letter to the classic platformers of the 90s such as Sonic and Donkey Kong Country. It’s an insanely colourful, 2.5D puzzle platformer that gives the player control of 5 different mechanical animals (wisely named Mekanimals) as they bounce, spin and smash their way through a challenging set of madcap levels in single player and co-op.
a weapon that would have given them the upper hand from the very beginning, leaving you thinking “why the hell didn’t you use that earlier?” Having said that, this is a bigbudget action movie and there are certain criteria it must meet and you can’t blame them for including the tried and tested “we’ve won! Oh, wait…” moment. The final showdown between Rose Creek and Bartholomew Bogue and his men is exhilarating and Fuqua never loses his characters amidst the action, still pausing for smaller interactions between the group, which is admirable. In fact, that is something that would have elevated The Magnificent Seven to a higher level; smaller, character driven moments that give the audience and insight into the less defined characters and
The influences were clear from all the childhood platformers that we grew up on, and the game, having been in development for 4 years, feels polished and handles very well. EGX is the biggest games event of its kind in the UK, and attracts massive crowds on all days. With world ex-
what makes them tick. But, as it stands, it is still a solid piece of entertainment. John Sturges The Magnificent Seven (1960) is very much a product of it's time and tells the story of a group of white men who unite to save a poor, immigrant village from annihilation. The world back in 1960 was a very different place to the world we live in now, as modern society is comprised of a plethora of races and religions living together in harmony...for the most part, anyway; and that's the best thing about this remake. Antoine Fuqua's The Magnificent Seven is also a product of it's time - it's big, it's loud, it's fun and it features a group of people of all colours and creeds coming together to stand as one. There's the African-American
clusive first plays of Dishonoured and UK exclusive of Call of Duty, lines of 2 hours plus were not uncommon! EGX has been and gone for another year, but if you’re looking for some more gaming action, EGX Rezzed takes place next March in London at the Tobacco Dock. Get your tickets now!
leader, a couple of white guys, a Mexican, a Korean and a Native American, all of whom set aside their petty differences for the greater good. Make no mistake, this is a big, entertaining $110 million blockbuster, but if you look beneath the surface, it’s a blockbuster that's saying a lot more than originally meets the eye and you have to respect that. Ultimately, The Magnificent Seven is an endlessly entertaining romp that suffers from some pacing issues and a large group of interesting characters who aren't given enough time to shine, but it's good old-fashioned fun about a ragtag group of likeable, unlikely heroes doing heroic things and having a blast while doing it. It's one hell of a ride, so saddle up and enjoy it.
The Phoenix – October 2016
he Fifth of September was an every important date to me as it was the day I started
college. I was worried, thinking what’s college going to be like? Will it be as bad as secondary school? Or will it be worse? But no, thankfully it is way better than school. With college there is more freedom than school; my college has a games room to relax in after lessons, and they also have a cinema room where we can watch films that have been released this year and so many more facilities. The teachers actually treat you like adults, not like little kids and the atmosphere is just better than school. I am studying a Business BTEC Level 2 Enterprise and Entrepreneur. The course is about how to
make your own business one day and how to manage a business. I am learning a lot about business because when I am older I would like to own my very own night club, and this course will one day help me to get to where I want to be. I also have to resit my Maths and English as well because I was unlucky and did not pass the first time. I was 1 to 2 marks of a C in English and 4 marks of a C in Maths. I think this was unlucky on my part but life goes on. I have to do them again later on in the year and hopefully I will pass, then I will be able to move on to do a level 3 business betc course from next year onwards.
ONE LOVE: B THE BOB MARLEY MUSICAL
irmingham Repertory Theatre will play host to ‘One Love: The Bob Marley Musical’, a new musical focusing on the defining period of Marley’s life and carrer in the 1970’s. Set to premiere at the REP in March 2017, the musical tells the story of the man propelled from rising reggae start to global icon, bringing his inspirational catalogue of music to the stage for the first time. Before he is able to help unite Jamaica, Marley must find his own peace first. “On behalf of the Marley family I am thrilled that
our father’s story is going to be brought to the stage with this production,” explained Cedella Marley “Birmingham is a natural place for its UK premiere. With its great mix of cultures, it’s a city where my father performed to audiences that were captivated by his presence, and we have no doubt that telling the story through music to a new generation in Birmingham will be part of his continuing legacy." After a period of self-imposed exile to London, following an assassination attempt in Jamaica, Marley returned to his homeland to perform
the One Love Peace Concert. During the performance, at the insistence of Marley, the leaders of the two opposing political parties came on stage, where he joined their hands in symbolic unity, resulting in a profound and transformative moment in the history of this country’s difficult political journey. One Love: The Bob Marley Musical is presented with approval of and in co-operation with the Marley family and Tuff Gong Pictures L.P. and has been developed with the support of Blue Mountain Music.
Start the Festive Fun!
oin in the fun for the 21st year at the fabulous Festive Gift Fair! The biggest and best Christmas shopping Fair returns to the NEC for four days from 10-13 November. The run up to Christmas Day involves a lot of planning and the hardest and often most time consuming part is buying the presents, so get it all done in one day at the Festive Gift Fair and make it FUN! Christmas starts here with plenty of choice, unique gifts, and a fun and easy shopping day out. For their 21st year they have a whole
new line-up of fantastic live music to entertain you through the day. So easy to visit, all in one hall, all on one level and there’s even a courtesy shuttle service to and from Birmingham International station. When your bags are full, you can drop them off at the Present Creche and continue to shop, stop for a bite to eat and enjoy all the great entertainment. There are 350 stalls overflowing with fabulous decorations for the home and present ideas for all – from babies to teenagers, parents to grandparents, for Him, for Her and even the pets!
5490 OE FGF16 DL Leaflet_AW.pdf
COMPETITION We have teamed up with the Festive Gift Fair to give 10 lucky readers a pair of tickets to attend this year! All you have to do is answer this simple question: How many days is the Festive Gift Fair at the NEC this year?
a) 1 b) 4 c) 8 Just email your answer, with your name, address and contact number to firstname.lastname@example.org with the subject “Festive Gift Fair Competition”. Competition closes at 23.59 on 31st October 2016. There is no cash alternative.
The Phoenix – October 2016
y a D g n Weddi uke & Jenny T
he joyous sound of praise and worship rang loud and long in the ears of many, as through the day and evening, friends and family of Dr Luke Jonathan Brown and Jennifer Anne Comery gathered in two of the most prominent landmarks in the second city to celebrate their wedding day. With Andy Gordon and Oasis Church Birmingham providing worship for the assembled congregation at St Philip’s Cathedral, everyone was on top form as they prayed and sang for the soon to be Mr and Mrs Brown. Reverend Canon Nigel Hand led the celebration, guiding the bride, groom and congregation through the service with his own inimitable style. Adrian Hurst gave the happy couple a few wise words of advice during his sermon, and with a solo performance by Debs Lawes and the worship band during the signing of the register, the service was almost complete. As the happy couple walked back down the aisle, drinks and canapes were served to all, before toasting the newlyweds who then posed for photos with their families and wedding party. Despite the weather not staying as dry as it could have, everybody filed outside for the confetti throw as the couple made their way to a family dinner with their nearest and dearest. But that wasn’t all she wrote, evening festivities moved everyone to the Banqueting Suite at Birmingham’s Council House, where a Caribbean style buffet dinner was served, with music, cakes,
dancing and laughter whiling away the time until the early hours. “The actual day was amazing, and exceeded all our expectations and dreams,” said Luke & Jen, “We were both overwhelmed with all the love we received from the over 300 guests who attended – we felt extremely blessed and lucky to share in such an occasions with so many of our dearests. “We were both born and raised in Birmingham, and have grown in our relationship in the city that we have come to love as our home. “This day, was by far, the highest point in our relationship, and it was a real honour to share in so many happy memories with all who attended. “We would like to give a special thanks to our parents, family and friends for all their support in the preparations leading up to our wedding day - we could not have done it without them! “We would like to thank the Reverend-Canon Nigel Hand and the whole team from St Philip’s Cathedral for hosting our wedding ceremony. “The venue was stunning and all the guests commented on how great the service was. We would also like to thank Adrian Hurst and the worship band from Oasis Church Birmingham, for delivering the wedding message and leading us in songs. “Finally, we would like to thank Irene Allen from OPUS restaurant and Sam Forth from the Council House for hosting our wedding breakfast and evening reception.”
Dr John Anthony Roberts CBE QC DCL LLD FCI Arb
or Black History Month I would like to introduce you to Dr John Anthony Roberts CBE QC DCL LLD FCI Arb an amazing man who sadly passed away on 26th June 2016 aged 88 years young. I am glad that I got to know Dr. Roberts, someone who made his mark in this world and left a legacy of hope. Be prepared to read about someone who really made the most out of life! Dr John Anthony Roberts QC was born in Sierra Leone on 17th May 1928. A man with great family history, his great grandfather Joseph Jenkins Roberts was born a free man on March 15th 1809 in Norfolk Virginia, USA. His grandfather immigrated to Liberia in 1829 and later became the first President of Liberia. Many of you may never have heard of Dr John Anthony Roberts QC, so read on and learn just a little about this humble man who had earned so much power and respect from people of all races from all over the world. Dr John Anthony Roberts was fascinated by aeroplanes, having
Welcome to ‘Camara features’ a new column where I will be spotlighting some of the most amazing charities, organisations and people I have had the privilege of working with. Be a part of my journey and learn and enjoy about being inspired. seen members of the Royal Air Force in Sierra Leone during the Second World War. He came to the UK in 1952 to join the RAF where he first qualified as an accountant. Later, he was selected for aircrew duties. Dr John Anthony Roberts remained in the RAF until 1962, serving in Europe, the Near East, the Far East and the South Pacific and many other places. He was invited by the then Prime Minister of Sierra Leone, to work in the Sierra Leone Civil Aviation Service where he worked in the Air Traffic Control Services Department between 1962 and 1964. Dr Roberts returned to England in 1964 with his wife, Jamaican born Eulette and their son Tony, who was born in Sierra Leone. Dr John Anthony Roberts and Eulette were married in 1961. He worked as Civil Servant in the UK between 1964 and 1969 and in 1966, he started to read law. His love of helping people was always at the forefront of his mind. He read law part-time at the Inns of Court School of Law whilst working and was called to the Bar (Gray’s Inn) in 1969. Three years later, he became
The Phoenix – October 2016
1990. Whilst doing this, he was a tutor at the Inns of Court School of Law in London till 1992. A former President of the British West Indian Ex-Servicemen and Ex-Service Women’s Association and former joint President of the British Caribbean Association, UK. Whilst tutoring in London, he was made an Honorary Citizen of Atlanta Georgia, USA. Also becoming a Freeman of the City of London in 1996 and in the same year awarded an Honorary Doctorate at City University. In 1998, aged 70, Dr John Anthony Roberts retired from the Bench as a Recorder, as is the requirement and in 2000 he was made an Honorary Citizen of the British Virgin Islands. Dr Roberts was 88 in May this year and recently retired from private practice. He was a fellow of the Chartered Institute of Arbitrators and sat as an arbitrator and remained a door tenant at Warwick Court Chambers. Dr Roberts was a keen pianist, organist, guitarist, choir singer and a firm believer that, “you are never too old to learn”. He loved reading, music and a Member of Lincoln’s Inn and then in 1996 became a Master of the Bench in 1996. However, it was in 1970 he helped set up Chambers at 9 Stone Buildings, Lincoln’s Inn. Five years later, he left 9 Stone Buildings to set up his own Chambers at 2 Stone Buildings. He ensured that his set of Chambers was fully representative mixed with diverse Asian, White, African and Caribbean members. He left 2 Stone Buildings in 1992 when he became a High Court Judge in The Supreme Courts of the British Virgin Islands, and Anguilla, both British West Indies Dependent Territories. He tried many high profile cases, including homicide. It was in 1983 that he became an Assistant Recorder (a parttime judge of the Crown Court) and became a Recorder in 1987. A year later, Dr John Anthony Roberts became the first person of African ancestry to be appointed a Queen’s Counsel at the English Bar. Apart from the English Bar, Dr John Anthony Roberts has also been called to the Bars of 10 other countries: Jamaica, Sierra Leone, Trinidad & Tobago, Bahamas, St Kitts & Nevis, An-
tigua, Barbados, Bermuda, Anguilla and Grenada. It is said that this may well be a record, as well as being the first Head of Chambers to have accepted seven female barristers at one time (which was a record in that era) in 1975. Dr Roberts was made a Bencher of the Council of Legal Education in Sierra Leone in
dancing and was a member of the Guild of Freemen, a former boxer and sprinter in the RAF who enjoyed flying light aircraft. Dr Roberts Q.C formally became a 3rd Patron in June 2007 to Descendants, a group founded by Margaret Noel in 1993 with a motto of, “Education is our right. We strive for excellence. We are talented, ambitious and gifted young people. We aim for the sky. With your support and help we will achieve our full potential.” www.descendants.org.uk I hold this man with great regard and I could not think of a better role model for us all to learn from and what better Patron could you have hoped to have had for such a worthy cause. He was without a doubt a truly remarkable man and hero to many that cared deeply about children being educated. I will miss him in his earthly form but he has left a legacy behind that has and will be inspirational to many today and for all the years to come. His love for his wife and family and his zeal for life was abundantly obvious. We thank his wonderful wife Eulette, son Tony, grandchildren Lauren and James and great granddaughter Amelia. Who shared this incredibly special man with us, allowing us to know just a little part of his special life. R.I.P. Dr John Anthony Roberts of Pinner CBE QC DCL LLD FCI Arb May 17 1928 - June 26 2016
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