Fya Empress dethrones Shaunelle McKenzie
New calypso queen Lornette “Fya Empress” Nedd is flanked by former calypso queen Shaunelle McKenzie (left), who placed third, and Nubian Empress who placed second.
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June 6, 2023
Fya Empress dethrones Shaunelle McKenzie

Lornette ‘Fya Empress’ Nedd has dethroned Shaunelle McKenzie in the Vincy Queen of Calypso Competition, 2023, and now has eyes set on claiming victory over the “Kings” in the Calypso Monarch Contest.


Lornette ‘Fya Empress’ Nedd

On Saturday, June, 3, Nedd was crowned Queen of Calypso with her winning piece, ‘Price of Neglect,’ which she performed at the Russell’s auditorium. Nedd triumphed over Nubian Empress who placed second, and former Queen, Shaunelle who placed third.

However, this victory may not have come as much of a shock to her fans considering Nedd’s extensive background in the music industry, as well as her numerous accolades won over the years.

These include, but are definitely not limited to winning titles for 2017- Calypso Monarch; 2013- Ragga Soca Monarch; and 2012- Road March. She has also been a three time Tobago Soca Monarch, and an International Soca Monarch finalist.

But, despite her previous triumphs, the feeling of victory is still an ecstatic emotion for Nedd as she told SEARCHLIGHT in an interview that she is elated that she has won the competition.

Nedd, who celebrated her victory by relaxing in bed, said she is happy that she has a working team that understands her even in times when anxiety has left her frazzled.

“They have learnt that over the last couple of years with me, so I have a very good … team that has made me comfortable going through to the competition,” Nedd shared.

“I love the Calypso so delivery was easy for me. I understood what I was saying … it’s a topic that is very timely so that made it easy for me to deliver,” she said.

Nedd’s topic, ‘Price of Neglect’ spoke of different issues that children are facing. She said that topics like these are up her alley as opposed to political commentary.

“… My thing, it’s always been about social issues, and in 2017…when I was singing about the abuse of women verbally… sexually, mentally; and this year, I wanted to deal with the children and the Proverbs and how things used to be long ago, and the reason why we are at the stage that we are right now, and how we can bring it back.”

The new Queen of Calypso added that she has received positive feedback about her performance so far, though she is not one to listen to the naysayers, as she is always focused on the good.

“If nobody stones a mango tree that has mango, something has to be wrong. Nobody’s throwing [stones at] a tree that doesn’t have fruit, so I tend to just listen and I keep my head in a positive state of mind,” she said, adding that there will always be naysayers and people who have different opinions.

Nedd also said that even though it was her first time competing in the Queen of Calypso Competition, she didn’t feel much different competing against her ‘musical sister’, Shaunelle.

“The only thing different was, she has been in the competition before me. This is my first year that I’ve been doing it, but basically when I do competitions, I’m always fighting with the kings, it never had anything to do with the queen, but I realized how important the crown was and I decided to compete this year, so I went in with my eyes for the crown.”

Nedd said that every year she masters the music industry a little bit better, and because no one is perfect, she is always looking for ways to make her productions, topics, and her writing craft better.

“And that’s one of the reasons for me changing writers all the time, and this year is no different, it’s just a notch up.”

However, Nedd said that she still does not feel  as if she has “made it” as yet, as her victory in this competition is merely “a stepping stone”.

“My eyes are set on the monarch, which is the Calypso Monarch. That’s what I always go for, so that’s what my eyes are for. This one on the sideline … it’s not my main crown …I’m happy that I got it, but my eyes are on the Calypso Monarch, where I would actually perform and go up against the kings.”

Despite being so focused on that competition, Nedd said she will be returning to the studio on Tuesday, June 6, to release a Power Soca number.

“… My style of music will always remain unique ‘Fyah Empress’ putting what I know and what I love, so my style always is different.”

Nedd said that although she is not sure what the future awaits as it pertains to competing, she knows for sure that she wants to be in the finals on stage on the night of Monarch competitions.