Shontae ‘Tae’ Alleyne-Clarke went where no other junior has gone before. The 15 year-old created history at the 2023 Scotiabank Junior Monarch Finals when she won her third straight title claiming a hat trick in the competition and retaining her Soca title.
It was in 2019, that Tae took her first title singing Stop De Violence. Last year she won the first Junior Monarch Soca competition with Party Nice Again.
After initial uncertainty about her participation in the event, Tae got her CXC’s out of the way to put on a stellar performance of Bajan Ting which gained her 116 points.
“I have no words. I am lost for words,” she said about the crowning moment. “I wasn’t really studying the results or anything. I just wanted to be better than last year.”
The Combermere student sees the win as a part of her journey to greatness: “I’m not going to stop. I’m going to keep going. This is something I really want to do. I really want to be international. Even if it is regional. I just want to show the people that I can sing and that I have something to offer to the world.”
Meanwhile, newly-crowned queen Sakarah put down a performance that impressed the judges.
“From day one I wanted to pull number one or eight,” said Sakarah about opening the evening’s proceedings at the Garfield Sobers Sports Complex.
The 17-year-old showed she was happy with her wish as she laid down a strong marker that the other participants found hard to follow. She gained 111 points for her riveting performance of Alexa that included a thought-provoking video presentation and technological props that drove home the point of the song.
“I feel like my hard work paid off,” she said, smiling, clutching the first place trophy that eluded her in 2018 after her third place finish. “Instantly tears came to my eyes,” she said after the announcement of second placed Kenaz ‘The Mighty Bit Bit’ Walker.
“Now I can breathe better,” she said.
The Mighty Bit Bit placed second with 99 points for his rendition of Drugs & Disobedience. The song also won Best Self-Penned Calypso, which included a prize of $500 and a $200 voucher from Courts Unicomer Ltd.
First-timer Eden Potent Murrell placed third for his performance of Can’t Lash We. Only six points separated him and Bit Bit as he earned 93 points. Danesha Danekia Davis’ execution of Dear John landed her fourth spot with 89 points.
Others who performed in the calypso category were: King K singing Dear God; Mhizz Khibaba with Unity Strength, Sabiah sang Your Creation and Slay with Just like These Women.
In the soca category Trinity ‘Trinity’ Clarke singing I Love Soca and Jazarie Zarie B Belgrave with his Get Active tied for second place since both received 104 points.
Trinity also won the Best Self-Penned Soca Song prize of $500 and a $200 voucher from Courts Unicomer Ltd.
Kymani Mr. Showman Devonish placed third with We Doan Care and gained 80 points for his performance.
Others who performed in the soca category were: Josh Ox with Push De Truck, Joshua B singing Dis Sweet Festival, Lil Stathis with Fold in Half and Ranesha singing Good Vibes.
No competitor went home empty-handed on Sunday night. Here is the breakdown as prizes from second place to eight place.
Second place: A cheque for $1, 500, a scholarship valued $2 465 from BIMAP and a $500 shopping voucher at Courts Unicomer Barbados Ltd. Third place: A cheque for $1,000, a scholarship valued $1 775 from BIMAP and a $400 shopping voucher at Courts Unicomer Barbados Ltd. Fourth place: A cheque for $750.00 and a $400 shopping voucher at Courts Unicomer Barbados Ltd. Contestants placing 5th to 8th: A cheque for $500.
In addition to prizes won based on placement, each contestant in the 2023 Scotiabank Junior Monarch Finals received a participation trophy, $500 voucher from Bridgetown Duty Free, and lunch for two at Accra Beach Hotel and Spa.