Meet our dynamic double-cast (listed in alphabetical order)!
Candice is equally at home singing both vocal classical and jazz music, and would be hard pressed to choose one over the other. She also performs modern rhythm and blues. She has had the opportunity to perform in countries across the region at different jazz and music festivals. Candice is a past winner of the Sunshine Award and the ffrench Trophy for Most Promising Performer in the Trinidad & Tobago Music Festival. She has also performed leading roles in productions of Jesus Christ Superstar and Porgy and Bess, and has performed at numerous recitals and concerts.
Marlon began his musical and artistic journey in 1995 with the Presentation College Music Department as a performer and designer since 1995. A former member of the Marionettes and Marionettes Youth Chorale, Marlon has performed internationally with Living Arts Inc in the roles of Sportin’ Life and Robbins in their production of Gershwin’s Porgy and Bess, touring the United Kingdom, Australia, New Zealand, Russia and Poland in over 70 performances at over 40 different theatres. A past Music Festival winner, Marlon is a two-time Cacique Award recipient for his performances in the roles of Judas in Lloyd Webber’s Jesus Christ Superstar and Gaston in Disney’s Beauty and the Beast. Currently he works as an arts administrator and freelance as a drama-in education practitioner, production manager, choreographer, performance coach and designer. Recent performances include Madea in RCKP’s Diary of a Mad Black Woman and Roger in Proscenium Theatre Company’s staging of Rent.
Kashif has primarily been involved in the creative and visual arts. He worked with Brian MacFarlane on his 2006 production, India; was a muralist for Carifesta; is an internationally-trained make-up artist with Estée Lauder and Clinique; and was the artistic director of several community projects including the dramatic productions Belle Fanto (2006) and The Bamboo Clump (2007). Kashif joined the Marionettes in 2007 as music has always been one of his greatest passions, and singing with the choir has been one of his most fulfilling pastimes. Now he takes on his biggest musical role as Dancaïro. Although fairly new to performing, he compensates for lack of experience with enthusiasm and a willingness to learn. He is currently a Visual Arts student at the University of the West Indies and hopes to fulfil both dreams of being a singer and an artist.
Natalia has recently completed a Bachelor’s Degree in Vocal Performance at the Manhattan School of Music (MSM), after receiving a scholarship from the Prime Minister’s Sport & Culture Fund. Performances include: Donizetti’s Rita; Il Pastor Fido (Eurilla), which won praise from Opera Magazine; Dido and Aeneas (Dido) with Key Academy of Music; and scene work on Die Entführung aus dem Serail (Kostanza), Les Contes d’Hoffmann (Antonia); L’incoronazione di Poppea (Poppea); Alice Ford in Verdi’s Falstaff; “Queen of the Night” in Mozart’s The Magic Flute; Così fan tutte (Fiordiligi) and Mefistofele (Marguerite). A former member of the Lights of Love and the Marionettes, Natalia is also well known for her arts advocacy work with the Classical Music Development Foundation, with which she has produced the Strings Song & Steel concerts and most recently Rapture. Other appearances include a performance of Richard Hundley art songs at Westbeth Music Festival NYC; A Tribute to Mozart at the Holders Season Barbados; and A Night at the Opera with Opera Grenada. Natalia’s awards include the Havelock Nelson Cup for Best Operatic Aria at the T&T Music Festival (2004), and she has been accepted into the Royal Academy of Music to pursue a Master’s in vocal performance.
Nigel has been singing for 20 years as a member of the Marionettes Chorale. He has toured extensively with the choir during their visits to the United States in 1997 and to Costa Rica in 2004, and has featured as a soloist in genres ranging from western classical to gospel, spirituals and calypso. In 2002, Nigel won the Norman Phillip Cup for the Most Outstanding Tenor at the Trinidad & Tobago Music Festival. In 2005, he featured in the Living Arts Foundation’s Caribbean premiere of Porgy and Bess in the role of Mingo. Nigel completed Grade 5 certification in Voice under the late Holitzia Seecharan and Gretta Taylor, and is presently a voice student of June Nathaniel at the Key Academy of Music. He practises law and is a Prosecutor attached to the Director of Public Prosecutions (Criminal Law Division).
Raguel was born into a musical family, and cannot imagine life without music. After singing in church from the age of three, he began learning music – theory, composition, and piano – in 2000 at Alfred Wallace’s School of Music. However, he credits classical music with changing his life, especially after the painful loss of his father. He began his Bachelor’s degree in Voice at COSTAAT in 2009, and joined the Marionettes Chorale earlier this year. Most recently, Raguel performed the roles of Tony in Caribbean Theatre Productions’ West Side Story at the National Academy of Performing Arts (learning the role in just a few weeks); and Prince Eric in Fareid Carvalho’s production of The Little Mermaid, also at NAPA. He makes his operatic debut as Remendado in this production of Carmen.
Stephan has been involved in the performing arts since childhood, taking a special interest in singing at just seven years old. Awards include: five medals (opera, Broadway, spiritual, pop and gospel classes) at the World Championships of the Performing Arts in Hollywood, California; and at the 2010 T&T Music Festival, the Adjudicators Cup for Most Outstanding Baritone of the Festival and the Abdool Plaque for Best Male Solo. Stephan is currently pursuing an Artist Diploma in Western Classical Music at the Academy for Performing Arts of the University of Trinidad and Tobago. He had his first recital last year, and while he enjoys singing other styles of music, opera is his first love.
A Couva native, Errol discovered a love for singing early in his life, joining his church choir. As a teenager, he experimented with dance and drama, participating in the finals of the Prime Minister’s Best Village Trophy Competition. In 1989, he saw an open audition notice for the Marionettes, a group which he thought was the best in the land. As a member, he has been a regular soloist, and is grateful for the opportunity to perform on the “big stage” for this production. He has special appreciation for his mother’s faithful support, though she passed on before seeing him perform; for the one person in his life who has always believed in his talent and encouraged him to push harder (you know who you are); and for Gretta, who always has shown confidence in his ability.
Lesley started singing at a very young age, and has sung with the Love Movement since 1992. There she was exposed to everything from calypso and soca to classical and Broadway, both as one of the choir’s lead soloists and as its choreographer. She also featured as the soloist for the song that won the 2010 International Song of the Year in the Unity Awards. It was not until 2005 that Lesley began operatic training with June Nathaniel. Just a year later, Lesley won the prestigious Havelock Nelson Cup for Best Operatic Aria at the T&T Music Festival. Since then, she has played the role of Dorabella in an excerpt of Cosi Fan Tutti, as part of the Key Music Academy and Classical Music Development Foundation’s production, Sfumature d’Amore: Nuances of Love (2007). In 2010, she was a featured performer in the production Sanctus: A Palm Sunday concert with John Thomas.
Dwight’s musical journey began as a child, playing the recorder at the Excelsior Music School under Clearance and Marina Carroll around age 14. He joined the Lydian Singers in 2008, performing as a chorister and dancer in productions like Songs from Hiawatha and competing in the T&T Music Festival. He joined the Marionettes in 2009, performing the role of Riff in excerpts from West Side Story in their last Christmas concert. Dwight currently trains with June Nathaniel at the Key Music Academy, after performing in the Academy’s production of Romanza last year. He also has an Associate’s degree from the Trinidad & Tobago Hospitality & Tourism Institute (TTHTI). He also serves as section leader for the basses in the Marionettes, and volunteers with the Youth Chorale.
A Point Fortin native, Arnold’s passion for singing started at his church, where his earliest influences were popular gospel recordings. He joined the Celeste Boys Choir (directed by Esther Batson) at 10 years old; and gained experience at the national Music Festival singing with Golden Sonata Community Music Foundation (directed by Rosemarie Prince-Walke) and the Lydian Singers. As a soloist at the Music Festival, he won and placed in several vocal categories, including tenor solo, baritone solo, operatic aria vocal recital, gospel, and spiritual. He currently trains with Anne Fridal.
Nigel joined the Marionettes in 1992, and began formal voice training under Anne Fridal and the late Narriman Hosein. A lyric baritone, he is currently completing Bachelor’s of Music Performance degree at Florida International University. In 2007 he performed in the chorus of Florida’s Gold Coast Opera’s production of Carmen, and in the North American premier of the musical Boomers. In March 2011, he sang the role of The King in Massenet’s Cendrillon.
Richard is a well-known television presenter who co-hosted various TV programmes with veteran producer and director Hazel Ward Redman. As a singer, his awards include multiple championships at the T&T Music Festival, and first place at the Scouting For Talent All Star Show. He has also functioned as an adjudicator for numerous talent shows and the national Panorama competitions. He is currently a senior lecturer in the Spanish and Languages Department at the University of Trinidad & Tobago, where he is also the founder and Musical Director of the UTT Chorale.
Patrice has sung with the Marionettes for several years, and her choral experiences began in the Bishop Anstey High School choirs and continued over the years through several university, community and semi-professional groups in Trinidad, Canada and Wales. Her awards include several T&T Music Festival championships, including Best Adult Solo (2004) and Best Lied Vocalist (2002). She also has been awarded academic scholarships to the University of the West Indies (UWI), Cardiff University, Westfälische Wilhelms-Universität Münster and Cambridge University, and is a past winner of the Trinidad Guardian’s National Secondary Schools’ Creative Writing Competition (1999). Her roles to date include the First Witch in the Purcell opera Dido & Aeneas (2004) with the Key Music Academy, and Sarah’s friend in the musical Ragtime with Encore Entertainment, Toronto (2006). This UWI valedictorian is working to build a regionally beneficial career at the juncture where her passions – linguistics and music – meet.
Feryal is currently in her fourth year at Stetson University in Florida where she is pursuing a Bachelor of Music in Voice Performance. Born in Winter Park, Florida to an Indo-Trinidadian mother and Palestinian father, she has travelled and lived in many countries including the USA, the United Arab Emirates, Trinidad & Tobago and Jordan. She has sung with the Marionettes for the last few years, and her musical background includes formal training in Indian, western, and Arabic classical music. Feryal has completed Grade 8 Voice (with Distinction) and Grade 6 Piano, and her awards include 1st Place at the 2008 National Winter Symposium at the University of North Florida; 1st place at the NATS 2008 and 2011; and the trophy for the Most Promising Performer at the T&T Music Festival. She has performed as a soprano soloist at Stetson for Handel’s Messiah and Brahms’ Requiem, and appeared as Barbarina in Mozart’s Le Nozze de Figaro; Berenice in Handel’s Berenice; and Lauretta in Puccini’s Gianni Schicchi. This summer, she will be attending the Music Fest Perugia in Italy, where she will perform works by Menotti, Donizetti, Mozart, and Gounod accompanied by the Perugia Symphony Orchestra.
Jacqueline began singing seriously as a member of the St Francois Girls’ school’s champion choir, directed by Laura Franklin, and has been a member of the Marionettes for over 20 years. As a member, she was part of its prize-winning touring contingent to the United Kingdom in 1992, and travelled with them to the United States (1997) and Costa Rica (2004). With the encouragement of Franklin, Taylor, and Marionettes accompanist Enrique Ali, she entered and excelled at the T&T Music Festival, winning the Mayor’s Cup for Best Adult Solo (1999 & 2002); the Gatcliffe Cup for Best Oratorio (2002 & 2004); the ffrench Trophy for Most Outstanding Performer (1999); and the Jean Abdool Memorial Trophy for Most Outstanding Vocalist (2002). In addition to music, Jacqueline was a dancer with the Astor Johnson’s Repertory Dance Theatre (1983–1987), where she was exposed to folk, contemporary and jazz styles, and she was involved in Limin’ by Godfrey Sealey, and The Mall Story. She is also a member of the Marionettes organising committee.
Marvin started singing in his church choir at age eight, and has trained with Anne Fridal for several years. Since then, he has taken his career from the familiar walls of his parish church, singing at weddings, funerals and church services, to renowned stages across Trinidad & Tobago and internationally. Marvin has won several singing competitions since 1996 and was judged Best Vocalist on the popular television series Scouting for Talent in 2003. He has performed the role of the Undertaker in Porgy and Bess at Queen’s Hall in 2005; in Geraldine Connor’s Carnival Messiah in Leeds, England (2007), for which he received rave reviews from the British media; and to packed audiences at the Kennedy Center in Washington, DC to commemorate T&T’s 47 anniversary of independence. In 2008, Marvin won each of the five solo categories he entered at the T&T Music Festival, receiving the adjudicator’s award for Overall Performance Excellence. Later that year, he launched his first CD entitled Some Enchanted Evening with Marvin Smith which includes popular songs like the title track “Some Enchanted Evening” from South Pacific and “The Toreador Song” from Carmen.
Llettesha has been singing for over 10 years in St. Vincent, Grenada and Trinidad & Tobago. She began singing at her home church, and for the last five years has studied voice and music with Jessel Murray, Charles Brunner, Eldon Blackman and Vertrelle Mickens. Llettesha has done studio background vocal work for Curtis Jordan, live background vocals for Loucretia ‘Luckey’ Horrel, and works with Camari Studios as an in house background vocalist. At the last T&T Music Festival, Llettesha was awarded four trophies: the Abdool Memorial Trophy for the Most Outstanding Vocal Performer; the Dorrel Phillip Trophy #2 for topping the Broadway Female category; the Nora Grant Trophy for topping the Lieder class; and the Myer Shield 2nd place for high achievement overall. Since then, Llettesha has been performing at a number of large events nationwide while working on her songwriting skills and preparing to release her gospel album.
Caroline’s performance work ranges from western classical texts to local theatre and musicals, including: the title role in Euripides’ Medea, Agave in Euripides’ The Bacchae and Polina in Chekhov’s The Seagull (all with Williamstheatre, MA, USA); Tony Hall/David Rudder’s Brand New Lucky Diamond Horseshoe Club; 3canal’s SHINE; Geraldine Connor’s Carnival Messiah; and recently Why Did I Get Married?, The Prime Minister’s Speech and Girls on the Side. Her inter-disciplinary solo show, Pack Light debuted at the New York International Fringe Festival. A trained jazz vocalist, she has performed with the Marionettes since 1995, and has performed and recorded with Orisa singer/songwriter Ella Andall. Winner of a Commonwealth Scholarship; T&T National Scholarship; and Hutchinson Fellowship for Theatre, Caroline has a Master of Arts degree in Drama from the University of London (Goldsmiths), and has also studied at the Lee Strasberg Film & Theatre Institute and Trinity/La MaMa Experimental Theatre Company in New York City. She has done a number of print, radio and television commercials in both Trinidad and abroad, and works as a writer and editor, in arts administration, and on the Marionettes production team.
A petroleum geologist by profession, Garfield has a passion for the ministry of contemporary gospel and a keen interest in opera. In 2007 he joined the University College London opera society, where he had his first taste of opera. They staged “Die Hochzeit des Camacho” (Camacho’s Wedding) of Don Quixote by Mendelssohn, of which he was a chorus member. Later that year he joined the community opera house Vision Opera (UK) and played the part of Remus in the ragtime opera Treemonisha by Scott Joplin. Returning to Trinidad and wanting to continue singing, he became a member of the Marionettes Chorale in 2008 and has been singing with them since. He competed in the Biennial National Music Festival in 2010, winning the Anne Fridal Cup for Operatic Duet, Gospel solo and 2nd places in the Operatic Aria and Bass Solo categories. He continues to enjoy the great experiences afforded him through his God-given talent, latest of which is the Carmen production.
Ayrice is currently an Artist Diploma voice student at the Academy for the Performing Arts of the University of Trinidad & Tobago, where she studies under Dr. Vertrelle Mickens. She has sung in many choirs throughout her school career, and is currently a member of the Marionettes Chorale and the UTT Chorale. Recent solos include the part of Adele in an excerpt of Johann Strauss’ Die Fledermaus in the Academy’s concert, A Grand Night for Singing, as well as the spiritual by Undine Smith Moore “Come Down Angels” in a concert hosted by the UTT Chorale.