STORIES BY SASHA HARRINANAN
HOTT Stuff Promotions is the big winner in this year’s Junior King and Queen of Carnival competition.
The 2018 Junior King and Queen as well as the third place finalists in both categories are all from the mini children’s band located at #9 Mc Inroy Street, Curepe.
Jermiah Walters, 11, earned 436 points and the Junior Queen title with her vibrant costume, Celebrations - Colours of Our People, from Hott Stuff Promotions’ presentation Colours of Our People, Celebration.
The band’s owner, producer and designer Franklyn Jagdeo told Newsday the reds, greens, purples and yellows of Walters’ costume “represent the rainbow nation of our people, with celebratory fireworks at the back.”
Second place, with 428 points, went to Ta’Keyah Fletcher for her portrayal of Arinna Sun Goddess, a rich yellow gold costume with a large bronze face atop it.
The bands of yellow gold fabric swayed as if hearing the music too as Fletcher crossed the stage to a very receptive audience in the packed Grand Stand, Queen’s Park Savannah, Port of Spain on Tuesday.
Third out of the ten finalists, with 413 points, was Priya Nagassar for her portrayal, Oil Spill.
A silver oil rig at the centre had shiny bronze fabric atop it representing oil gushing from the well while all around the well, and Nagassar, was a reflective skirt of black and silver, reminiscent of an oil spill.
“Priya wanted to bring home the title because she’s 17, so this is her last year in the junior category but she’s happy the band won.”
Jagdeo said this reflects the values he tries to inculcate in the band. “I always tell my kids, it doesn’t matter who places where because we win together. Yes, they’re entering a competition but when one wins, everybody else wins.”
The last of the 11 Junior King finalists, Nikolai Jagdeo, earned 413 points and the crown for his portrayal, Explosion of Our Cultures. This was the 11-year-old’s second time in the junior king category, having first entered last year for the same band, Hott Stuff Promotions.
The costume lived up to its name, with lots of metallic reds and golds, accented by touches of green, blue, purple and yellow.
“Although it’s only his second time as a king, Nikolai really wanted to bring home a title, so he’s overjoyed.”
Second place, with 406 points, went to Samuel Jackson for Mask of the Namgis Thunderbird.
A pearlescent white thunderbird, whose gold peak lined up with Jackson’s face, was flanked by large gold, white and black half circles on either side that evoked images of wings.
Eight-year-old Justin Ramkalawan, another of Jagdeo’s cousins, came third with 397 points for The Waters of T and T. Shades of blue and silver, accented by white, brought to life his costume of a wave cresting in the middle of the sea.