Come Carnival Saturday night, another chapter of the ‘greatest show on earth’ continues in the ‘Big Yard’, when 10 bands in the medium and 10 in the large band category will compete in the Grand Finals of the National Panorama competition at the Carnival City, Queen’s Park Savannah, Port of Spain. This year in the Big Yard, the North Stand has been replaced with a new facility dubbed ‘North Park’, which attracted mixed reviews.

Defending champions BPTT Renegades will go after a double. They topped the semi-final round by three points ahead of big band Desperadoes, with an aggregate of 279 points. The iconic side played a Duvone Stewart arrangement of the Batson/George/Galt/Hilsmeier/Henry collaboration of Hookin
Meh
, that was sung by Farmer Nappy. Desperadoes performed Nailah Blackman’s Iron Love, and earned 276.

The 2018 Medium Band champions, Pan Elders, also leads in its category. The Southern-based steel orchestra wowed the panel of judges with its rendition of Owen Reyes Johnson’s The Will, and scored 275 points. Shell Invaders and Caribbean Airlines’ Skiffle, both played Hookin Meh, andHADCO Phase II Pan Groove, who played Swappi’s Party Start, tied for third place. Invaders has the best chance of pulling off an outside win. The band is sounding very powerful, and has some wicked arrangements at the end.

Massy Trinidad All Stars, the 2017 winners, placed sixth with 268 points for their performance of Nadia Batson’s So Long; ‘Smooth’ should try speeding up the music. Nutrien Silver Stars and First Citizen Supernovas tied for seventh place, with 266 points each. Republic Bank Exodus and T&TEC Tropical Angel Harps were the final two bands, with 265 and 264 points respectively.

FINALISTS

Large Bands

Band, Song, Total

1. BPTT Renegades Hookin Meh (279 points)

2. Desperadoes Iron Love (276 points)

3. Shell Invaders Hookin Meh (271 points)

3. HADCO Phase II Pan Groove Party Start (271 points)

3. CAL Skiffle Hookin Meh (271 points)

6. Massy Trinidad All Stars So Long (268 points)

7. Nutrien Silver Stars Rag Storm (266 points)

7. First Citizen Supernovas Hookin Meh (266 points)

9. Republic Bank Exodus Rag Storm (265 points)

10. T&TEC Tropical Angel Harps Rag Storm (264 points)

Medium Bands

Band, Song, Total

1. Pan Elders The Will (275 points)

2. Courts Sound Specialists Laventille The Phung-uh Nung Sweet (273 points)

3. Petrotrin Katzenjammers Stranger (272 points)

4. NGC Couva Joylanders Fire in The Area (271 points)

5. Curepe Scherzando Yuh Lookin For Horn (270 points)

6. Pamberi Gyal Owner (267 points)

7. NGC Steel Xplosion Sing In The Party (262 points)

8. Melodians Hookin Meh (260 points)

9. NLCB Valley Harps Dingolay (258 points)

10. Sangre Grande Cordettes Professor Say (262 points)