Official opening of Carnival 2019 set for January 19

A scene from the opening of Mas Domnik in 2019

The national parade and official opening for Carnival 2019 is set for January 19, 2019 under the theme ‘Carnival is a sizzling explosion.’

Marva Williams of DFC said on radio that one of the reasons for coming up with the theme was the desire to take the focus off Maria.

“… Hurricane Maria will always be in our minds and our tongues but in terms of what we offer to the people we are inviting to come to Dominica, we have to stray away a bit from the negativity and we decided that this year will be a year of celebration and it’s a year to present Dominica in an extremely big way. So, Dominica’s carnival will be a sizzling explosion of colour, of pageantry, of calypso, of costumes, of traditional ole mass and all the little elements that make up our carnival,” Williams explained.

When asked why the parade was taking place so early, Williams noted that there is a packed calendar of events from January to March and from the opening, there will be an event every weekend which is an element of carnival leading to the two days of celebrations.

Williams continued, “Dominica’s carnival is part of the Discover Dominica Authority and it is a product that is being sold to people overseas and we’re asking them to come to our country and I remember in meeting with stakeholders and members I said what exactly is the purpose of the national parade and official opening and one of the feedback I heard is that it’s a means of enticing people to come to Dominica’s carnival and we are faced with the reality. It is not easy to get to Dominica. I mean we have issues with access so it is wise to give people some time to plan.”

She added that while an opening carnival parade for local patrons might be appropriate two to three weeks before, in order to entice people from overseas, it is necessary to give them some time to plan “and that was the thinking behind having the national parade and official opening a little bit earlier. So, we believe that it is good to sell it as a product and that product will entice people at least to come down the week leading up to carnival Monday and Tuesday.”

According to Willaims, the parade will be categorized into different elements of carnival including the pageantry, the traditional ole mass such as the Sensay, the Lapo Kabwit and the Souswel Souwi so as to depict to the uniqueness of Dominica’s carnival.

The parade will have a contemporary component to the parade to include flag wavers, costume bands, advertising floats and electronic bands.

The DFC official said the need to continue to celebrate our tradition as a country remains at the core of the 2019 Mas Domnik celebration. However, there’s something extra this year.

“In 2019, as our theme says, we have to explode in terms of what we offering, an explosion that does not forget our tradition but continues to tell the world that Dominica is alive and well, we have progressed and look at how much we have progressed in terms of what we are offering,” Williams explained. “We are just offering the elements of our carnival in a bigger way that signifies the uniqueness of what Dominica’s carnival is all about.”

She said assistance is available to traditional groups in terms of transportation for those who live far out of town and also those who require assistance to get their material and accessories.

She invites those interested in participating in the parade to register than they can visit at the DFC office on 5 Great Marlborough Street Roseau (former Marpin building), to fill in the registration forms, the forms can also be accessed on their website at, the form should be downloaded and emailed to after it has been completed.

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  1. January 16, 2019

    I agree. I am 71 years old here in the bush with no lights, no phone, no wifi, but I still love carnival. Elas. Dominica is not a place for the casual cruise ship tourists. When will you stop worrying about them and support your own people who want to make a positive cultural contribution?

  2. Lastdays Jeremiah
    January 16, 2019

    “Sizzling explosion” it surely is as an ungodly pagan bacchanal festivity!
    Turn away Dominicans and let us REPENT of OUR SINFUL WAYS before HE again unleashes His Wrath and Judgement upon us and literally shakes the very foundation of our nation like we have never before seen….we have Nine (9) waiting to sizzle and explode at His Permissive Will…REPENT!

    January 16, 2019


    “Those who refuse to hear will feel my wrath AGAIN”
    says The Lord God

    Turn away from your sinful ways and bacchanal unrighteous behaviours surrounding ungodly pagan festivities.

    REPENT REPENT REPENT before THE MASTER OF THE UNIVERSE who set the earth on its foundation, shakes the ground beneath you with devastating “Sizzling explosions” like you have never seen in your Nation.

    TAKE HEED AND BE WARNED…YOU DOMINICANS have been weighed and found wanting…REPENT!

  4. Ki Sa
    January 16, 2019

    “Hurricane Maria will always be in our minds and our tongues but in terms of what we offer to the people we are inviting to come to Dominica, we have to stray away a bit from the negativity”

    What nonsense is that? Maria? Negativity OR HARSH reality? After what that hurricane do me i choose the latter. Just say let’s move on but not that crap please

    • Sa KI
      January 16, 2019

      Her’s some negativity KiSa I left when freedom won.”I left” Then Came UWP they came an pre mature too lol! then came the New/Neo DLP of DFPites the same crapI left in when they won. Ki SA haven’t you notice the graph? It was BS in 1980 1995 then this current BS. WE are eternally sharphed/screwed your choice. Let’s try Pappy.

  5. Badwill
    January 16, 2019

    The idea of the government using significant amount of tax money for carnival is ridiculous.Why the carnival organizing committee or the festival committee which ever is responsible for organizing carnival raise the necessary funds for carnival? Too many organization just lay back and rely on government for funds, that’s bad.groups ,people, clubs,organizations should be more self reliant towards their survival.

  6. Laughter the best
    January 16, 2019

    Sewo keeps us ignorant Amidst all our problem the season is here anew. Mix it up get dem drunk and win again the plan

  7. Winston Smith
    January 15, 2019

    For ‘negativity’ also read ‘reality’. The reality that people still have damaged homes, no utilities, trauma, loss, and a real difficulty making ends meet. These are inconvenient truths for the DDA. Note also that the shift in focus for carnival is that it is being increasingly seen as a tourism product rather than an important element of Dominica’s cultural heritage, a tradition that belongs first and foremost to Dominicans. Carnival should not be controlled by the ministry of tourism. it should be organised by an independent board who view it as heritage and not a show for cruise ship visitors.

    • Ki Sa
      January 16, 2019

      Amen to that !!!

    • January 16, 2019

      I tend to agree with your note on “shift of focus”.

      As I see it, the essence of carnival is fervent spontaneity along with a driving force that comes from the heart of the people. Too much control and tourist orientation is liable to diminish rather than develop its cultural significance.

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