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Explosion of colour takes the stage

Spectators at Savannah get cultural treat

By Anna Ramdass anna.ramdass@trinidadexpress.com

Wild and uninhibited behaviour, coupled with fanciful mas in all its colourful glory, were prominent on the Grand Stage of the Queen's Park Savannah in Port of Spain yesterday.

On the stage, which is a judging point of the best Carnival bands, there was an explosion of culture as spectators were treated to the energetic and acrobatic dance moves of masqueraders, who put on a grand show.

Machel Montano's "Pump Your Flag", Iwer George's "No Pain" and Fay-Ann Lyons's "Drop on the Ground and Roll" seemed to be the top three songs played at the venue.

The artistes thrilled the crowds who packed the Grand and North Stands at the Savannah when they performed live on the trucks of the respective bands in which they played mas.

President George Maxwell Richards and his wife, Jean Ramjohn-Richards, former beauty queen Wendy Fitzwilliam, cricket star Brian Lara and football star Dwight Yorke were some of the prominent persons to dance across the Grand Stage in full costume.

From as early as 6.30 a.m., masqueraders began assembling at the Savannah to cross the stage.

Popular band Harts was the first band to take centre stage at 7.20 a.m.

There was no sign of fatigue or tiredness; all faces were flushed with the heat of the morning sun.

Around 8 a.m., the band Bliss, with the theme Destination Bliss, made its way on stage, and each masquerader looked as though they just stepped out of a magazine as they portrayed sections depicting different lands such as Thailand and Bali.

The band Wee International was a real head-turner as band members were sectioned off in different costumes to depict gemstones such as amethyst, emeralds, rubies and diamonds.

One band kept it totally local, choosing to be unique in portraying local delights.

De Harvard Revellers designed costumes to reflect local delights such as Mango Chutney (a fluorescent green costume), Scotch and Coconut water (white and silver), Pastelle on a Green Fig Leaf and Roti With a Red Solo.

The new band Yuma, themed Press Play, transformed the Grand Stage into a rainbow with their depictions of different birds and other characters inspired from arcade games.

Just after 11 a.m., Trini Revellers took the stage with The Golden Years.

By lunchtime, Spice was in focus, followed by Island People and Legends.

As the sun began to set, medium band champions Ronnie McIntosh's The Mask Of... took the stage.

There was a smooth flow of bands at the Grand Stage. In some cases, security had to intervene to move the bands along, but there were no major hiccups at the judging point.

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