Wed | Apr 8, 2020

Xodus enchants with 2020 designs

Published:Tuesday | November 12, 2019 | 12:20 AMStephanie Lyew/Gleaner Writer
The ‘Poison Ivy’ costume was equally as shocking as it was sexy.
Designer Jessica Campbell with models of ‘Khaleesi’.
Liane Chung steps out confidently like a true ‘Vixxen’ model.
Rope dancers does risky moves to awe Xodus Carnival band launch patrons.

Xodus Carnival is the second of three bands to launch for Jamaica’s 2020 carnival season, raising the bar even higher with its extravagant production held last Saturday. A rope dancer in silver, moving against the dark sky on a riser, was the first head-turner for the night. The second was a more-than-40-foot framework with neon lights front and centre and disc jockeys overlooking the audience that left persons guessing what trick the event conceptualisers had up their sleeves.

In an awe-inspiring and plush showcase of unique concepts, 15 bewitching sections, designed by a team of approximately 13 designers and, of course, their models, practically mesmerised as each costume tied in well with the theme ‘Enchanted – Live Your Fantasy’.

Models stepped out in perfect form as three doors in the well-lit backdrop opened up. Leading the pack and setting the sexy mood for the rest of the exhibit was Redd ‘Her Red Cape will Covet You’, designed by David Dewer and marketed by Skkanme. The second, Poison Ivy, stood out in all its neon green glory, including the bob wig with which it is outfitted. But it was Jessica Campbell’s design, titled ‘Khaleesi – The Mother of Dragons’, that ignited obvious ‘wow’ from the onlookers. The Game of Thrones-inspired costume in its fiery display, supported by fire-breathers, was a distinct mix of age-old-meets-modern style.

A returning designer, Campbell, who last year created Mumbai for Xodus’ ‘Cosmopolitan’ theme, was overwhelmed by the response to her design for ‘Enchanted’.

“The design process is going to be different from start to finish, but I knew I wanted to use green and the theme for 2020 is about a magical creature, and dragon is such an inspiration, so Khaleesi was fitting,” Campbell told The Gleaner.

Making the switch from Xaymaca International, designer Tracy Boyce of Krave the Band, based in Barbados, who was joining the Xodus family for the first time, said she was spreading her feathers “with the ultimate goal to maintain a relationship with Jamaica’s revellers and be part of the celebrations for years to come”.

“It continues to grow and with that, Xodus Carnival has maintained its pace, so designers like myself just have to move with the times, and I am happy with the level of professionalism and teamwork with this band thus far,” she continued.

Three costumes which belonged to Xodus’ ultra-premium section, Envy, also illuminated the ‘Broadway’ stage with their array of colours, jewels and feathers – none looking like the other. The prices for Envy sections range from US$710-US$870, while the rest of the costumes from the premium band start at US$460-US$1,010.