Machel Montano performing on Friday evening.
A drone shot of attendees at One Love Concert on Saturday.
PHILIPSBURG–Soca sensation Machel Montano, St. Maarten local performers, legendary reggae star Beres Hammond and dancehall superstar Popcaan sealed this past weekend as one of the most successful nights for St. Maarten’s Carnival since it started some fifty years ago.
St. Maarten Carnival Development Foundation (SCDF) made good on its promise and secured a massive, epic and energetic performance by Soca King of the world Machel Montano on Friday evening. Montano brought Carnival Village down with his classic and current hits as no one else had been was able to do for the past 15 years.
Entitled “The Return,” the concert was held in Carnival Village as part of the 50th Anniversary of Carnival this year. In collaboration with Motorworld, Abu Ghazi and West Indies Landscaping Company (WILCO), SCDF said the concert would be remembered as one of the most memorable shows of Carnival 50, along with every other international concert on the Carnival schedule.
The concert also featured performances by St. Maarten’s reigning Road March King and Soca Rumble Groovy winner Kelvin “King” James, and Soca Rumble Power winner King Vers, along with top-of-the-top DJ Blaze who got the crowd ready for Montano.
An estimated 8,000 persons filled Carnival Village on Friday, making it the second-biggest show for Carnival 50. However, the most attended show was the One Love concert on Saturday evening with close to 9,000 persons in attendance. With two major headliners supported by local reggae bands and entertainers, the show sold out before 10:00pm on Saturday. SCDF had to open an extra gate for concert-goers who were stuck outside the village for hours trying to get in.
Hammond sang his heart out to the crowd early in the evening while Popcaan turned it up a notch with his performance. Both the international and local artistes who performed on Saturday were really great; Hammond is legendary and Popcaan is currently “blowing up.”
“Different generations, different flavours and happy that they were part of history,” stated SCDF President Alston Lourens.