Portraits from Carnival Tuesday in Trinidad and Tobago.Image via Flickr Creative Commons License (CC BY-NC 2.0)

Trinidad and Tobago Carnival is the country's lifeblood. Even for those who don't participate in the annual celebrations (and there are many who don't), most people understand and appreciate the festival's importance. Even aside from the economic boon it brings and the amazing range of artistry it highlights, it is a ritualistic release valve that — when done right — facilitates unity, transformation and rebirth in a multi-ethnic, multi-religious space that often wrestles with issues of race, corruption, and violence.

Because of the restrictions imposed as a result of COVID-19, Trinidad and Tobago Carnival was put on hold for two consecutive years. The 2023 festival will be the first in-person celebration since the start of the pandemic. This year it takes place on February 20 and 21, and it is being met with great joy, anticipation and gratitude. From music to mas, Global Voices will be exploring different aspects of the festival and diving a little deeper to understand what makes Carnival such a treasured time in Trinidad and Tobago.

Stories about Carnival in Trinidad & Tobago