The Trinidad Express Comments On Fights B/w Divas
Battle of the divas
By TERRY JOSEPH
Saturday, February 14th 2004
Destra, Denise in fist fight
DUBBED "soca divas" by fete promoters who, as advertising gimmicks, insist on setting up "battles" between them, Denise "Saucy Wow" Belfon and Destra Garcia on Thursday seemed to have interpreted the rubric literally; resulting in a rough and tumble physical fight.
The two were, at the time, backstage at a calypso competition put on by the House of Angostura for its employees, when a conflict broke out over the not so simple matter of which of them should perform next as guest artistes.
Eyewitness reports said Belfon was listed to perform ahead of Destra but the latter slipped into the slot and began singing. Upon completion, Belfon reportedly addressed Destra, complaining of the latter's move. With no response coming from the accused, Belfon insisted and, again, according to reports, Destra threw a drink on her.
This reaction became the trigger for what sources said was a full-scale catfight, with hair-pieces, weaves and fists flying, shoes kicked off in the melee and general bacchanal replacing the calm that had existed just minutes earlier.
Contacted yesterday, Belfon declined comment, saying only: "I really don't want to talk about it. I am not pleased with the situation and I am still upset by the whole thing. I don't like that kind of thing at all. It wasn't supposed to happen but it did and I don't like what has come out.."
Destra was unavailable but was said to have been be so badly beaten that she was reconsidering public appearances scheduled for this weekend. Reports say her manager, Brian Morris was also dragged into the conflict and may have received a few blows as well.
Talk of the fight spread quickly and dominated early-morning radio yesterday, with attendant wisecracks from callers and commentators alike.
It was not as funny for officials of the Trinbago Unified Calypsonians Organisation (TUCO), who have hired both artistes to guest at today's Calypso Fiesta at Skinner Park.
TUCO president Michael "Protector" Legerton described it as "a shame that, whatever the issue, two singers should come to blows in public". He has offered to mediate, if needed, to help reconcile the row "or do anything that is required to stem the confrontation".
"This is bad for calypso in general." Protector said. "Things like this bring the art-not just the parties to the conflict-into public odium and affect others who may be trying to convince their principals that we are able to put on good, clean shows and just as we are seeing some of the younger artistes selected to lecture to schoolchildren.
"I cannot help but lay some of the blame for this episode on fete and show promoters, who may now wish to consider not using the kind of hype that makes their appearances on stage confrontational.
"If it is a contest, some of that cannot be avoided for the singers are cast in adversarial roles but for guest slots, surely they do not have to be 'versus' or doing 'battle' every time," Protector said.