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NLCB Chutney Soca Monarch 2007 Semi-finals

Lal Bharat singing 'Feel meh Heart' Lal Bharat singing 'Feel meh Heart' Reporters
Interview: January 20, 2007
Posted: January 23, 2007

Despite the controversy surrounding some contestants who were billed to perform at the nearby United National Congress's Dollar Fete, the National Lotteries Classic Chutney Soca Monarch Semi-Finals, which was held at the Rienzi Complex in Couva, came off smoothly and attracted a large enthusiastic crowd. Although the actual competition did not start until 11:20pm, Raymond Ramnarine and Dil-E-Nadan, St. Johns United Tassa Group and the Durga Shakti Dance Troupe kept the crowd entertained. Dil-E-Nadan and their dynamic front line singer Derreck Seales, Devika Ram and Raymond Ramnarine were on stage for about an hour, belting out a range of soca, reggae, pop, chutney, and Bollywood movie songs. At one point they were joined on stage by Heartbreakers, a four-member all male dance group, who thrilled the audience with their acrobatic dance moves.

Shaffiyat Boya Mohammed singing 'The Roller' kicked off the competition segment. He was one of the 33 contentests vying for a place in the finals where $520,000 in prize money would be at stake. Most of the contestants were accompanied on stage by the Durga Shakti Dancers, the Nirvana dancers or the Shiv Shakti dance troupe, who all lit up the stage with their combination of colour, choreography and movement. The contestants in order of appearance were:

Artiste / Song
  1. Shaffiyat Boya Mohammed / The Roller
  2. Ryan Peter Estrada / Who is de Father?
  3. Kenneth Supersad / Chutney on the Rise
  4. Vinoo 'Stiffy' Harrilal / Walay Your Waist
  5. Mohip Poonwassie / Suno Gon
  6. Ravi Babooram / Love You Till I Die
  7. Robin Jagdip / If ah Catch yuh Tonight
  8. Lynette 'Lady Gypsy' Steel / Lal
  9. Arnold 'King Jordie' Jordan / Dance in Yuh Sari
  10. Michael 'Soca Elvis' Salloum / Chutney Wine
  11. Mc Donald Hercules / Sing a Chutney For Me
  12. Marva 'Marvellous Marva' Mc Kenzie / Gayaweyla
  13. Trevor Gore / Carapachima Jump
  14. Ramdeen 'Falko' Maharaj / Shanti Bati
  15. Davindra Ramdath / Hamay Dar Laagay
  16. Phoolmattee Ramjattan / Shadi Karoo
  17. Lal Bharat / Feel meh Heart
  18. Angela Ramoutar / Bold Face Woman
  19. Lynn Khan / Chalo Nadiya
  20. Morel 'Luta' Peters / Curry Duck
  21. Nigel Salickram / Bala Man
  22. Edward Ramdass / Wiggle It
  23. Neeshan 'Hitman' Prabhoo / Mohania
  24. Arsha Kamachee / Piyataryiaa Murtie
  25. Heeralal Rampartap / Old by Face, Young by Waist
  26. Samraj 'Rikki Jai' Jaimungal / Boleh Murugwah
  27. Sarika Mahabir / Ah Want to Party
  28. Adesh Samaroo / Rum Like Dat
  29. Carlene Wells
  30. Tricia 'Sexy Tricia' Hamilton / Calalloo
  31. Neeshad Sultan / Julaway Julani
  32. Rooplal Gidharie / Meeray Peeya
The contestants were solidly backed up by JMC Treveni which is seen as the number one cross-over band in the world. After the first ten contestants, the Shiv Shakti dancers took to the stage in a mass of colour and movement, executing a beautifully choreographed piece to rousing appreciation from the crowd.

In the second half of the show, some of the top contenders showed their worth, including visually-impaired singer Arsha Kamachee, Adesh Samaroo, Heeralal Rampartap, Neeshan 'Hitman' Prabhoo and Carlene Wells. The three-time Chutney Soca Monarch Rooplal Gidharie was the last contestant of the night.

Popular soca singer Rohan 'Fireball' Richards, one of the contestants, did not appear on stage to perform when his turn came, despite being seen at the venue earlier. He was the only absent semifinalist of the night.

Those making it into the finals of the Chutney Soca Monarch are:
reigning champion Rooplal Girdharie, Rikki Jai, Luta, Tricia Hamilton, Carlene Wells, Sarika Mahabir, Heeralal Rampartap, Neeshan 'Hitman' Prabhoo, Soca Elvis, Adesh Samaroo, Lal Bharat, Edward Ramdass, Ramdeen 'Falko' Maharaj, Neeshan Sultan and Phoolmattee Ramjattan. The Finals will be held on February 3 at Skinner Park, San Fernando.

Chutney Soca Monarch Semi-finals 2007 in pictures: