Hottest Carnival in the Caribbean off to a blast
May 10, 2011
Hottest Carnival in the Caribbean off to a blast

by Kenara Woods

Dubbed the “Hottest Carnival in the Caribbean,” Vincy Mas 2011 kicked into gear on Saturday, May 7, with the official launch at the Solidarity Inc. Car Park, formerly the Chamber of Industry and Commerce Car Park.{{more}}

Hundreds flocked to the event as the show got underway shortly before 7p.m.

Patrons were able to get a view of the nine contestants, who will be vying for the coveted Miss SVG pageant, as the bevy of beauties made their first public appearance.

While there, the young ladies introduced themselves to the crowd and were each sashed by their sponsors. The featured event is carded for May 28, at Carnival City, Victoria Park.

As the crowd grew, young children gathered stage side as the various artistes took to the stage in the best new song competition.

In the Calypso Category, Aurella “Queen B” Beache, with her song “Protest Fuh Dat”, was adjudged winner. Beache, who mesmerised the audience with her lyrics, told SEARCHLIGHT that it had been nine years since she last sang calypso and wanted to return to the arena with a bang.

“I took my time and assessed all the topics in SVG and decided on the most pertinent ones,” Beache said with a bright smile.

Beache does not intend to stop there. In fact, she is hoping to place another crown on her head before the Carnival season ends.

“I’m going all out and heading for the Calypso crown…I want to reach to the finals and put another crown on my head,” said the member of the Upstage Calypso Tent.

Glenroy ‘Sulle’ Caesar placed second with his song, “Counting Chicken” while Ronald “Ron B” Browne rounded off the top three with his song, “The Acid Test”. The other competitors were George ‘Jah Burke’ Nedd, who rendered “Musical Bomb” and Derrick “Man Sick’ Alexander who delivered “Ann Grateful”.

In the Ragga Soca category, Shernell ‘Skarpyan’ Williams returned to winning ways as he took the title for a second consecutive year with his song, “She tell me”. The ‘Stinger Man’ as he is affectionately called, said the most important thing for him is to continue to put out great music for the Vincentian public. He also used the opportunity to encourage other artistes to take their music seriously and strive to put St.Vincent and the Grenadines on the world stage.

Singing, “Anything You Want”, Garret ‘Icon’ John had to settle in second position while Cornelius ‘Poorsah’ Williams, with his song, “D Juice” claimed the third spot. The other artistes, who competed in this category, were Shaunelle McKenzie and Road March King, Raeon Primus, who goes by the monikers ‘Fete King ‘Madzart’.

The Soca category saw new comer, Armstrong ‘Strong’ Williams taking the crown with his song, “Tie Me”. Williams told SEARCHLIGHT that he has been writing his own material for the past three years and decided that he would enter this year. The Richmond Hill resident is hopeful for great things, as he goes for another crown in the Calypso arena.

Tamisha Nichols with her song, “Above the rest” came in second, while Icon had placed third with, “We dey”. Lancelot ‘Mad Skull’ Gloster and Madzart rounded off the top five.

Perhaps the most highly anticipated part of the show was the Extempo Competition, in which Vincent ‘Blakey’ Cuffy reigned supreme for a second straight year. Coming up against ‘Sweet 16’, Blakey’s lyrical prowess on the microphone was too much for his competitor, as the crowd went into a frenzy with every punch line that Blakey dropped.

A Mas component was also staged, which featured Ahdrenalin Mas, Beautex International, Guinness Y De Lima Blondie Birds and Friends, Imagination, Tribes Mas Band, High Voltage Mas Production, Melbourne Artisans, Owen Ralph and the Professionals, SVG Players International and Xtreme Fanatics.

J’Ouvert Champion, J’Ouvert fanatics also made an appearance.

The launch saw a number of stakeholders delivering brief remarks, including Chairman of the Carnival Development Corporation (CDC), Dennis Ambrose, President of the Youlou Pan Movement (YPM), Warren Knights and President of the St Vincent and the Grenadines Calypso Association (SVGCA), Hassan Kennedy.

Representatives of sponsors, National Lotteries Authority, St. Vincent Brewery Limited, Liat (1974) Ltd., LIME, St.Vincent and the Grenadines Broadcasting Corporation (SVGBC), First Citizens Group and NBC Radio, also gave brief remarks at the opening.

Addressing the gathering, Minister of Culture Frederick Stephenson assured Vincentians that Carnival 2011 is unlike Vincy Mas of years gone by.

“We are hoping that the activities and festivities of Vincy Mas 2011 would rise to ensure that SVG and our cultural festivities rise to the top of the Caribbean,” Stephenson stated.

Entertainment on the night was provided by the Band, Akcess, DJ Blaze and the Band Kinetic. The Vincy Soca Dans, including Luta, Fireman Hooper and Tabia brought the curtains down on the show.