K2K Alliance and Partners' 2019 presentation Through Stained Glass Windows earned them their fifth medium band title and the new title of Overall Band of the Year.
The band won the medium category with 1,371 points. Mas Passion’s 2019 presentation Hidden Kingdom – Tribal Xpressions came second in this category with 1,202 points.
The NCC announced its winners at the VIP Lounge, Queen's Park Savannah yesterday.
Asked about the Overall Band of the Year title, chief judge Nigel Eastman said the small and medium bands are never eligible for band of the year, but sometimes there are "beautiful bands" in the small and medium categories, so the commission started an overall band of the year.
"We have the winner of the mini, the winner of the small, the winner of the medium and the winner of the large. There is a panel of ten adjudicators and they all vote on which one should be overall band of the year that expresses and shows excellence in TT's Carnival in different aspects such as in colour, in shape, in form and in message," Eastman said.
NCC chairman Winston "Gypsy" Peters, CEO Colin Lucas and commissioner Rosalind Gabriel were also present as the results were announced.
The Lost Tribe’s Taj took home the title of Large Band of the Year, edging out three-time winner Ronnie and Caro’s Let’s Go Tobago. The Lost Tribe won the title by one point, with 1,304 points, while Ronnie and Caro’s Let’s Go Tobago got 1,303 points.
Mini band of the year went to Moko Somokow’s Palace of the Peacock, while small band of the year went to the Tribal Connection Cultural Promotions’ The Great Gathering: A Tribute to Astil.
The K2K twins, Karen and Kathy Norman, told Newsday yesterday that they were “humbled, relieved and very grateful” at the Overall Band of the Year title. The twins said victory was doubly sweet as the majority of their team members are women and it was important to see women leading in the Carnival arena.
“It is actually a family-oriented band with the majority being women,” they said. Winning the Overall band of the year theme, they said, “speaks to the Bible, that David can really beat Goliath. It is not a matter of size but one of innovation, and playing it all with your heart.”
Some of the band’s designs were part of Machel Monday this year. Asked if there would be any further collaboration, the K2K sisters said there were no future collaborations envisioned, but historically, they have done costuming for the Marionettes chorale.
“We hope for new greater opportunities in the future,” the twins said. They thanked the masqueraders “who have been with us for the long haul, because without them there would be no us. A lot of people saw the band come from the beginning and it was a struggle.
“Every year we face new challenges. And we really thank the team who continue to work with us who really help us bring the band to fruition.”
The band said its 2020 collection is completely different from “anything we have tried to execute historically.”
They said the 2020 collection will be more detailed and they “can’t wait to actually reveal it to anyone.”
Valmiki Maharaj, The Lost Tribe’s creative director, said he feels “happy and proud of my team...thankful and humbled.”
He said when he first heard the results, he did not know how to feel but later became a “crying mess.” He said he cried for some time and thought about when the band first started.
“I thought about all the support from so many people, all of these stalwarts and people who I look up to in this industry. I feel such humility to be able to say now this brand we started as a child growing up has now been able to achieve that,” Maharaj said.
He said the band’s masqueraders are the frontline of the entire thing.
“Every year we are on the road and they are like, ‘Oh my God, we are going to win. We are taking it this year,’ and I think above everybody else, this is for them. I am happy when they are happy.”