So where’s the excitement?

If you weren’t beautiful with a banging body, you weren’t modeling a costume at Opening of Carnival and that didn’t just go for the ladies on Sunday as the event that is supposed to open the carnival season in grand style unfolded.
For the second time organizers were trying out the Pointe Seraphine venue and for a second time they seemed to have scared away a significant number of regular carnival fanatics who would never otherwise miss a carnival related activity—unless of course they were convinced from beforehand, for unspecified reasons the event would not be like any Opening of Carnival anyone has seen in St Lucia, ever.
The carnival/ jazz location ‘mix up’ has been brought up numerous times in the past couple weeks. It’s mind-boggling why the two very different events seem to have swapped personalities, like twins trying to play a joke on family and friends. For what it has become, the mellow and low-key venue that is Pointe Seraphine would’ve been ideal for the Opening of Jazz, with perhaps a more suited line up. Mindoo Phillip Park has always been an appropriate location for carnival related activities, so what’s changed?
With a completely open mind the STAR like everyone else went to take in the event on Sunday, June 3. Change is inevitable, so perhaps this time around organizers would get it right and bring vibrancy and excitement back to the Opening.
The new Point Seraphine venue seemed not quite the place to jump and wave and from the start people stood there, most on their best behaviour waiting to see what the show had in store. Even though the event was away from the main courtyard, it didn’t change the fact that it was still being held in a duty free shopping complex—not quite the bacchanal party zone!
Nevertheless the show was underway and it was time for the bands to present their 2012 portrayals. The stage lit up with feathers and beads in an assortment of colours as each band tried to out-do the other. After the extensive costume display it was time to unveil the seven young ladies who will be competing for the carnival queen crown this year.
Reigning carnival queen Roxanne Didier led the way as the carnival queen hopefuls made their way onstage to introduce themselves to the expectant crowd. 2012 contestants are Tamika Gaskin, from Gros Islet, Sadia Hippolite, Morne Fortune, Janelle Desir, Monier Gros Islet, Ashlie Alcide, Bocage, Shena Francis, Canaries, Kershara Williams, Jacmel and Sherwinner Eleuthere from Banonneau. Notably, only 15 young women auditioned for the carnival queen pageant this year.
After that glittery segment, it was time to set the party mood. Menel was first onstage and performed “Rebellious Youth”, “Never Say Never” and “Black Sigatoka”, the latter a Calypso tune that addresses the recent banana epidemic. Invader was up next with ‘Playing Mas’ and his new tune “For a Cut”. The Looshan Revelers were on hand to help make his a very comic performance indeed. The Calypso segment was over in a flash and Arthur, a new artiste was the first Groovy performer with his hit “Nobody Can Party Like We.” Marie Ann was next with “Text Buddy”, dressed somewhat conservatively in a loose fitting button down shirt and tight fitting pants, but nonetheless still smoking hot! Mongstar’s “St Lucia We Love” kicked things up a notch, with Ambi singing backup. The artiste also performed the mega hit, “Glo Coco” and the groovy track “Piton”. Fortunately or not show host Onyka was in the wrong place at the right time and got put on the spot by Mongstar! Onyka’s challenge was to do the ‘Shobulu-bulu’ dance. Onyka, always up for a challenge obliged and did the previously unheard of dance with a smile, much to the delight of the audience.
Q-Pid came on with her signature line, “Go if you want to go” then performed “Ti-ri-ri” leading the way to Teddyson John who rendered “Land of Whine” and “Jourvert Morning”. Another notable performer at the Carnival opening was Ricky T, with his catchy “Mosquito” tune!
Walking around everyone just appeared to be taking it in, not quite having the time of their lives but making the most what was supposed to be an ‘explosive’ carnival opening.

The 2012 Carnival Queen contestants.

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