Maroon & String Band Music Festival


The Carriacou Maroon & String Band Music Festival is a 3-day celebration of traditional songs, dance, drumming, food, and other cultural performances. The festival is generally held at the end of April and highlights the African roots of Carriacou’s people with three days of activities.

  • this year's 2023 schedule is found below

Originally established in 2001 as the Carriacou Maroon Music Festival, this was later merged in 2010 with a string band competition to create a single event focusing on preserving the rich cultural expressions of Carriacou. This is a unique local event celebrating the rich history and culture of Carriacou.

The term “Maroon” is traced to the Spanish word cimarrón, meaning "fugitive" or "runaway", and applied to escaped slaves who took to living in the mountains. Enslaved people often ran away within the first generation of their arrival from Africa.

The Maroons are lauded for preserving their African languages, culture and religion while hiding out. They also retained the knowledge of medicinal herbs and practiced drumming and dancing when administering herbs.

The three-day Carriacou Maroon & String Band Music Festival usually begins on a Friday night featuring a menu of smoked foods, along with local staples, followed by drumming and big drum dancing. 

On Saturday night, the venue for day 2 of the festival changes. Usually this is to the historical 3-acre lush Belair Heritage Park, transformed into an authentic festival village with a maroon centre and a dedicated stage for cultural presentations. However, in 2023, Hillsborough will serve as the venue for Saturday's activities, split between Hillsborough Square and the Botanical Gardens.   

The third and final day of the festival, Family Day, usually takes place on Paradise Beach with string band performances, children’s events, and swimming races. But don’t worry string band music concerts and a variety of local dishes, including fresh seafood, continue to be on hand too.

Day 1: Friday 28 April (Bayaleau)

  • 6:00 am - Morning ritual / wetting of the ground / blowing shell
  • 3:00 pm - Sharing of Saraca food
  • 6:30 pm - Flambeau Parade / Official opening
  • 8:00 pm - Cultural performances

Day 2: Saturday 29 April (Hillsborough)

  • 11:00 am - Hillsborough Square - "Strings in the City" - Traditional wedding display / Live string band music
  • 7:30 pm - Botanical Gardens - "Cultural Explosion" - Local and visiting cultural groups 

Day 3: Sunday 30 April (Paradise Beach)

  • 4:00 pm - Cultural performances / Live band music

General Information



You may also like

MV Chez Charmaine

MV Chez Charmaine
Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked

{"email":"Email address invalid","url":"Website address invalid","required":"Required field missing"}