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Dice after winning one of his 8 crowns
Dice after winning one of his 8 crowns

Though the dust has now settled and the figures are being added there's a smile, not a broad one yet, on the faces of calypsonians. So far so good.

According to well-placed sources returns from the 2016 Calypso season organized by the Dominica Calypso Association (DCA) are "impressive."

"I can tell you for certain that the Quarter Finals and Semifinals were a little bit better for us this year as compared to last year, 2015," said someone with knowledge of the DCA's finances but we cannot name him because he was not authorized to speak publicly on the matter.

According to our sources, preliminary figures from the association indicate that the three main shows staged during the 2016 Calypso season may have netted over EC$200,000.

(Some of our readers have doubted that this figure is correct. Our reporter could not fact-check).

However, with the payment of VAT and prizes to the calypsonians, in addition to the mortgage of the Calypso House, profits are expected to be reduced considerably, officials say.

"The season was not bad for us…it was fair, we are putting the final figures together," said Derick "Hunter" St. Rose, the DCA president.

Meantime, the source said the DCA must pay the band, in addition to calypsonians who did not advance to the semis, those who did not make it to the finals, plus a number of other expenses such as security services.

VAT, he explained, takes a major chunk out of the DCA's earnings.

"We have to pay government almost 60 grand and prize money is almost 86 grand… we are preparing the financial statement for the stakeholders," the source said.

"The King gets EC$20,000…plus you have the other top places and then those who did not place all have to be compensated," the source said.

He said that the figures are there and the auditors will verify them.

In the past calypso fans have been requesting an increase in the prize money for the King and the other top winners but the source said in 2016 the DCA did not increase the cost of tickets given the "difficult economic situation in the country."

He added that the VAT issue and the cost of tickets make it impossible to increase the value of prizes at this time.