The parade started promptly at 10:00 in the morning and went until 6:00 in the evening. It took that long for 10,000 costumed volunteers in 14 competing masquerade (or Mas) bands to dance down Lakeshore Boulevard. Each band portrayed a unique theme that fit into Carnival tradition.
Costumes are tailor-made, hand-stitched and can cost thousands of dollars but it’s all about impressing the judges and wowing the crowd.
They start out young. Walking in the Caribana parade is a tradition that can start when you’re a child and go way into adulthood.
Each Mas band struts their stuff in front of the judges and is marked on visual impact, authenticity, creativity and moves amongst other aspects.
She’s feeling the music in all kinds of ways.
How adorable is she? She’s setting up to be voted Queen of Caribana one day.
The great thing about the parade is the diversity. While the majority of people involved have Caribbean roots, spots are open to anyone from any background. You just need to love the culture and want to shake your body.
No matter the age, height, or weight, band members are out dancing in all their glory feeling extremely comfortable with their bodies. Now that’s freedom!
Showcasing the colors and pageantry of her costume is no easy measure.
One woman used a guitar as an accessory. Now that’s creative.
As Queen of this Mas band, she sets the agenda for the energy that the others in her group must show.
It takes weeks and thousands of dollars to create the King and Queen costumes
These ladies are feeling the riddim and the vibe.
The costumes are unified but each band member carries something to represent their individual island.
One requirement—comfortable shoes
The Fallen Angel: Rhinestones, feathers and sparkles, oh my!
Jump up, jump up, jump up and wave!
It’s amazing what you can do with a little wire these days.
Men play a vital role in the parade as well, but regrettably don’t end up showing as much as the women.
See you next year! For more information on Scotiabank Caribana, go to caribanafestival.com or to find out what other events are going on in Toronto, visit seetorontonow.com.