After the first launch of artistes in December 2018 and months of preparation and anticipation the St. Kitts Music Festival is finally here with the performers ready to go and organisers promising it will be the biggest concert ever.

“We had a great start to the Music Festival last night [Wednesday], seven months after the first launch they are ready to host the biggest festival St. Kitts has ever seen,” said festival chair Damian Hobson at a press briefing.

“The sound, stage and lights are all awesome. This year we have chosen a new venue the Kim Collins Athletic Stadium and after seeing the work put in last evening I have the confidence that when you visit the venue you will be very impressed.”

Thursday saw the the traditional ‘jump up night ’ with the artistes promising to give the new venue as the Kim Collins Athletic Stadium a proper testing.

Ahead of her performance on Thursday night, soca artiste Nadia Batson said she was ready to again be in front of a St. Kitts audience.

Famous for her hits ‘So Long’ and ‘Catching feelings’, Batson said the last time she performed was near the start of her career a decade ago and she was curious to see how the audience reacts to her this time around.

“The last time I was in St. Kitts was over 10 years ago at the beginning of my career and no one know who I was. So it is interesting tonight to see what the differences will be and how they will receive my music now they are familiar with my work.”

Soca artiste Skinny Fabulous said that it was his second time performing at the festival and he was happy to see the event grow, promising to “shell down the place.”

“My last visit to St. Kitts was five years ago and from what I am seeing here it is a much bigger festival and I am happy to be a part of this,” he said.

Local soca artiste Rucas H.E said he was grateful for his second opportunity to perform at the festival and has been preparing for the past few months.

He said it was part of the hard work it took to make it as a musician onto the Musical Festival stage.

“Any local artist who would like to be in this position that I am in now. There is no easy way of getting here. It is a lot of hard work you need to make sure that you put that work in,” said Rucas H.E.

“Once you find your strength you work at it and stay consistent I can guarantee you, you will find yourself on the St. Kitts Music Festival.”

Hobson said that each night will start on time and it was imperative to get in early. He said that online sales had closed but some tickets were still available.

“Over 2300 tickets [sold] online thus far. Yesterday we took the decision to close online ticket sales and persons are asked to purchase their physical tickets at the various ticket locations,” Hobson said.

Minister of Tourism Lindsay Grant thanked the committee for their hard work and said there was an excellent line-up on offer.

“It is of little wonder why the St. Kitts Music Festival has earned the reputation of being the most diversified musical show in the Caribbean.”

He also noted that the festival was more than three nights of entertainment

and encouraged visitors to explore the island during the day time.

Grant added that just as last year, they are determined to finish each night before 2am so the public could patronise other entertainment opportunities around the island.

“We want visitors to be able to patronise establishments offering night time entertainment and I am convinced that the St Kitts Music Festival is an economic catalyst that is contributing to the sustainable livelihood in St. Kitts and Nevis,” Grant said.

Grant said that over the past four years the Festival has witnessed a dramatic upsurge in small enterprises providing services in the festival and that last year they recorded the highest air arrival in history for June.

“I know we will top that in 2019. I know it is a testament to the success of the music festival which attracted a record number of attendees. We are indeed punching above our weight,” he said.