Written by Lou-Ann Jordan

Carriacou Carnival 2018: Time for Revelry


Carnival is a time of revelry.  People take to the streets in bright colours and extravagant costumes.

This year Carriacou’s Carnival Monday and Tuesday is to be celebrated on 13 – 14 February.

The two days will see the small island overflowing with locals and visitors frolicking to the most popular soca songs from residents, as well as from those in the region.

A variety of activities are available for all who wants to take part.  Pretty mas is a prominent feature of Carnival, with men and women dressed in vibrant costumes bedecked with beads and glitter.  There are those who prefer to forgo the ‘pretty’ mas.  And, for them Carnival is about playing Jab Jab, and excitement builds as they slather their bodies with thick, black, oil, or for some, paint. Then there are others for whom reciting Shakespeare in the streets epitomises Carnival.

Carriacou’s Shakespeare Mas or ‘Pierrot’ is a much anticipated feature of the island’s festivities.  The practice which is reminiscent of the colonial period models this traditional character after plantation owners.  Today, brightly dressed white-masked pierrots compete against each other reciting lines from Shakespearean plays with the goal to be accurate.  The consequence of inaccuracy being a quick tap with a stick from an opposing pierrot.

All are invited to experience Carriacou Carnival.  You can to listen to the pierrots recitals, stalk with the Jab Jab or jump up in pretty mas.  A ferry ride from the mainland is all that is between you and this year’s celebrations.


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