Saldenah Carnival band launch lived up to its ‘Sky High’ theme

Early last week, Louis Saldenah promised the Caribbean Camera that he was planning to put on a “HUGE Band Launch” on Saturday night. When the doors opened at his 2024 costume showcase at the Grand Cinnamon Banquet & Convention Hall in Scarborough, it was obvious he had kept his word (and then some).

Saldenah Carnival band launch 2024

“We had approximately 1,100 people attend our band launch last Saturday night,” Saldenah told the Caribbean Camera. And Saldenah hasn’t stopped thinking big. Tonight (Thursday 25, April), Part Two hits with the official opening of the Saldenah Mas Camp in Scarborough.

This year, Saldenah Carnival has 16 sections, and most had males and females showing their stuff at Saturday night’s event. The theme for the evening was Sky High, so it was fitting that the models who came flying were, for the most part, bedecked in colourful feathers.

There was a T-shaped stage at one end of the hall, allowing spectators, most of them holding cell phones up high, to see the show from three different sides. Although there was a bit of a wait for the show to start, it was worth it. The models that danced down the catwalk had obviously rehearsed. It wasn’t all costumes. Several times during the show, entertainers like King Cosmos, head of OCPA, and popular calypso singer, appeared on stage. As well, politicians including City Councillor Michael Thompson and Ana Bailão, a former mayoral candidate, made their way onto the catwalk. Officials from the Festival Management Committee were there as well.

Saldenah Carnival

The response to everything on stage was warm, but not everyone liked what they saw in this year’s costume design. Several complaints from carnival-goers cropped up after the launch, including one from Claire Gloria Sandy, who posted an oft-repeated question/complaint: “Who is designing these rubber band and elastic costumes? So fed up with seeing women’s cracks (with strings) up their butts.”

But if you look at the audience pictures, you will see that most of the people taking in the show are women, and judging by the cheers, they liked what they saw. People wanting to order costumes and join Saldenah Carnival on the parade route can kick the tires starting this evening in Scarborough.

Saldenah Carnival
Saldenah Carnival

Part Two is this evening (Thursday) with the opening of their Mas Camp! The doors will open at 6 pm at the Saldenah Mas Camp where revelers can see the costumes up close, and put in their orders for the August Grand Parade. The mas camp is located in the same building as in 2023, at 280 Consumers Road.