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Mandarin singing competition
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 The 2024 ICDF Mandarin Singing Competition is set to take on a unique and culturally rich twist.

Alston “Becket” Cyrus, an icon in the Caribbean music scene, the St. Vincent team has chosen to cover his classic song “St. Vincent, I Love You” in Mandarin.

This remarkable rendition aims to introduce the beauty of St. Vincent and the Grenadines and its captivating music to a broader audience.

Becket, 79, has made an indelible mark on calypso and soca music with hits such as “Teaser”, “Small Pin”, “Wine Down”, and “Gal Ah Rush Me.” His work has earned him numerous accolades, including multiple Road March titles and the prestigious Caribbean Cultural Icon Award.

Becket’s music, characterised by its blend of traditional calypso and modern soca, resonates deeply with listeners and addresses social and political themes, making this Mandarin cover a significant homage to his legacy.

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The video for the Mandarin version of “St. Vincent, I Love You” will be shot in stunning locations such as Bequia and the Botanical Gardens, capturing the natural beauty of SVG.

The team behind this project includes Taiwan ICDF Mandarin teacher Yu-hui Huang and five dedicated Mandarin class students. Among them are Jolesia Pope, the global champion of the 2023 ICDF Mandarin Singing Competition; Abigail Richards, winner of the Singing Popularity Award, and Kallel Da Silva, the 2022 ICDF Reading Competition global champion.

The team also comprises Marina Lampkin, the most senior student, and Faith Grant, the youngest and visually-impaired student, whose participation adds a heartfelt touch to this endeavour.

“This project not only highlights the picturesque landscapes but also aims to foster cultural exchange and appreciation through music,” Taiwan ICDF said in a statement.

“The competition will feature several awards, including the Popularity Award. Upon completion of the video, the entire nation of Saint Vincent and the Grenadines is encouraged to show their support.”

Organisers say this year’s Taiwan ICDF Mandarin Singing Competition promises to be an extraordinary event, celebrating cultural diversity and the enduring legacy of Becket Cyrus. S