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K2K using art to inspire and give back

By Melissa Doughty Monday, October 5 2015

WHEN THE band K2K first launched onto TT’s Carnival scene in 2012, no one anticipated the change it would have on mas and its evolution.

Twins, Kathy and Karen Norman have since altered the landscape of mas; showing that mas is fashion and fashion is mas.

The company, under which the band is headed, K2K Alliance and Partners was founded in 2010 and while its goals include winning Band of the Year, there is also a wider mission and that mission is a fund-raising arm focusing on giving back to TT.

The gala dinner fund-raiser, dubbed by the organisation as a personal empowerment and global business speaker series will be held on October 17.

At the gala dinner and fashion show, to be held at Hyatt Regency, costumes from K2K’s Carnival 2016 offering, Shangri-La, will, be unveiled.

In e-mailed responses to Newsday, Kathy defined The Colour of Courage as, “our social responsibility as it is meant to positively impact and inspire a larger group. The initiative is larger than the costuming aspect of the brand, given its universal message. That dogma being: True courage isn’t the absence of fear, but rather, it is acknowledging trepidation and persevering despite of it.” In a media release K2K said, “The black tie, gala dinner will establish the Colour of Change as a platform for connecting global leaders with local individuals who wish to benefit from insights on how to awaken the giant within and propel themselves to achieve success in their personal, professional, business and entrepreneurial lives.” Amsale Aberra, an internationally acclaimed wedding designer and creative director of Amsale, Kenneth Pool and Christos Bridal will deliver the keynote address.

Aberra’s work has been featured on the Oprah Winfrey show and Grey’s Anatomy, The View, American Wedding, 27 Dresses, When In Rome and the Hangover among others.

She has also dressed celebrities such as Halle Berry, Julia Roberts and Selma Hayek.

For the sisters, life and the work it brings are about consciousness and positivity. One only needs to look at its 2016 concept behind its band Shangri-La.

The band’s Shangri- La offering was inspired by the company’s novella Growing Black Orchids. Growing Black Orchids, Norman said is, “a K2K production also meant to inspire.

The protagonist is a Trinidadian girl who is mute, and eventually learns to find her voice despite her fears and apprehensions.” Kathy said of the band, “The novella, Growing Black Orchids is a K2K Production and speaks of seeing life as a meadowland in full bloom. Thus, this year K2K is transposing the imagery of the “meadow” from the novella to a living, dancing and blossoming garden in our presentation “Searching for Shangri- La.” And for the medium band– which the sisters said would remain a medium band in 2016– the art of telling life’s lessons is important “The stories being told year-in-year-out have always focused on life’s lessons. For instance, The Waters (year one) spoke to finding your Saraswati/ Your true essence of self, while VIE (year three) was analogous to overcoming obstacles (it’s not how you fell but how you rose). This year Shangri-La speaks to looking at your life experiences as the most perfectly imperfect bouquet.”

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