2014 Carnival Junior Calypso champions crowned

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ST. THOMAS - Lionel Roberts Stadium was full of boisterous energy and great songs Tuesday night as 13 young calypsonians took to the stage for the 2014 Junior Calypso competition.

Taking her eighth crown, Na'Kaya "Princess KeKe" Esdaille won the Secondary Division with her tribute to the former South African president Nelson Mandela.

Ny'Kel "Prince Short Shirt" Emanuel took his fourth crown Tuesday, but it was his first win competing in the Intermediate Division. He won with his song, "Get Off De Corner."

In the Primary Division, Jah'syi Narcisse "Mighty Jah'syi" took the crown for his song "I am Bless."

Princess KeKe, a ninth-grader at Charlotte Amalie High School, wore a beautiful costume of green, red and gold. A long dress with puffed sleeves and a towering head wrap gave her the regal beauty of African royalty.

When she first arrived on stage, she spoke to the audience: "We are not here to mourn of his passing, but to celebrate the great life he lived."

Princess KeKe sang about Mandela's role as a freedom fighter, saving his nation from apartheid and becoming the best president South Africa ever had.

"Mandela, your achievements can never be measured," she sang.

KeKe's song, titled "Mandela," lauded his unbroken spirit and the love he had for his country and people.

The first runner-up in the Secondary Division was Monae "Lil Red" Greene, who sang "From My Wheelchair," a song about how even with a broken foot she must get on stage to sing about the troubled state of the territory.

Second runner-up in the Secondary Division was Te'Jani "Clever-T" Jackson, who sang about Carnival fun in "V.I. Party."

Winning the title for the Primary Division was Mighty Jah'syi, who competed under the name Mighty Power Ranger in two prior competitions. A change of name was good luck for the 7-year-old, as he won over the crowd with his energetic dancing and fun tropical print costume.

His song, "I am Bless" detailed how fortunate he is to live in the Virgin Islands.

"My island is a classroom to me," he sang. "Everywhere I go, I'm learning more."

He said he can go to Mountain Top to see banana trees, to Frenchtown to buy fresh fish and to Lindbergh Bay to swim in the ocean.

"I am blessed. I am blessed. I am blessed. Thank God for the Virgin Islands, I am blessed. I am blessed," he sang. As he sang, a slide show of pictures of the islands played on a screen behind him.

First runner-up in the Primary Division was Kastin-Italia "Princess Italia" Catherine Roach, who sang "I Don't Like Guns" about how scary it is to hear gunshots in her neighborhood.

- Contact Aldeth Lewin at 714-9111 or email alewin@dailynews.vi.

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