Bacchanal 2017 is off to a strong start with the recent New Year's launch pulling a huge audience to Mas Camp, even with stiff competition from Magnum Live, which was held at Sabina Park the same night.
From as early as 11 p.m., security personnel at the venue had their hands full as motorists competed for the few parking spaces which were left unoccupied in the venue, while others opted to park on the outside of the stadium property.
The theme for this year's carnival season is 'Spellbound' and by 12:30 a.m., patrons appeared to have been struck by the Bacchanal spell as they gave their full attention to the main stage while the models who showcased this year's costumes gyrated their bodies to the pulsating soca beat.
Jodi Henriques, is one of this year's costume designers. she told The Gleaner that her design, titled Bewitched, is mesmerizing. She also said she is not competing with other designers to make the best costume, but, instead, to make her clients happy and satisfied.
"Its not a matter of competition to me, it's like this. Do you like the colour? Do you like the design? Do you think it will suit your body? There are so many beautiful options here at Bacchanal, so it's a matter of which one you like. When I was in the fabric store, I saw this snakeskin velvet and it really spoke to me, because what is more sexy than velvet? So I added a body chain, and that, in the sunlight at this year's road march, is going to be a spectacle. Also, what is special is that after carnival, ladies can wear that body chain with a simple black dress. it can be worn forever," she said.
Popular media personality Yanique 'Curvy Diva' Barrett, was among this year's models, and she had the audience's full attention as she danced and shook her upper body in awkward positions to show the durability of her costume.
Speaking with The Gleaner, she revealed that the costume is called 'Maleficent' and was inspired by the fantasy queen from popular Disney film Maleficent. Barrett, who will be jumping with Unleashed Jamaica this year, expressed that Bacchanal 2017 will definitely feel her presence.
"I will be unleashed on the road. I jump every year, but this year is extremely special ... I am going above and beyond, and I am so happy to be a part of Unleashed. so you know it is going to be crazy, because they always do it big. They always do amazing and over-the-top costumes with creativity, so I just can't wait ... my costume this year, yu need fi draw close, because it's going to be pure excitement," she said.
Designer Bonnie Lee also chimed in to emphasise the costume's durability. She also said the design has taken on a personality of its own.
The road march is set to take place on Sunday, April 23.
*See photo highlights from the Bacchanal fete and band launch by Darien Robertson/Freelance Photographer