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Anjell Bryan is Miss Jamaica Festival Queen 2014

Miss Jamaica Festival Queen, Anjell Bryan Charlene Codner (l) & Honica Brown (r)

After running off with two of the sectional prizes, the petite Anjell Bryan, Miss Kingston and St. Andrew, sashayed home with the crown for Miss Jamaica Festival Queen 2014. The tiara for 1st Runner-up was snagged by Sharlene Codner (Miss St. Ann) while Trelawny’s representative Honicka Brown snatched third place.

Anjell Brown performs the dub poem 'A Tone Mi a Tone'The thirteen contestants arrived at the Ranny Williams Entertainment Centre armed with hopes, their talents, and numerous supporters for the final leg of the journey that has been an important career starter for many in the cultural realm. They delivered stories, dub poems, narrative poems, songs and a few pieces that combined multiple genres. 

Bryan had the audience laughing along with her dub poem ‘A Just Tone Mi A Tone’, a satiric jab at the bleaching phenomenon, which also suggested that the weave-pedemic is not much different. Easily the tiniest of the lot, the 25 year-old had clearly made a big impression on both the judges as she also earned the award for Most Culturally Aware and Most Active in Her Community. Honica Brown, Petrina Williams, Charlene Codner & Trudy Ann Hylton

Second Runner-up, Honica Brown also snagged one of the sectional prizes being dubbed the Most Poised. Two additionally sectional prizes were awarded. Tahera Brown of Portland took home the prize for Best Performance, based on her delivery of ‘Jamaica Song’. St. James’ Trudy-Ann Hylton sufficiently impressed her fellow contestants to be dubbed Most Congenial.

Interestingly, with the exception of Anjell Bryan, the night’s top contestants generally hailed from the middle and western ends of the island. The night’s top five were Petrina Williams (Miss Clarendon), Charlene Codner (Miss St. Ann), Trudy-Ann Hylton (Miss St. James), Honica Brown (Miss Trelawny) and, of course, Anjell Bryan (Miss Kingston and St. Andrew).Romain VirgoThe top five get ready for their questions

The evening, emceed by Kerry-Ann ‘Kiki’ Thombs, also included performances by Harold Davis and Friends, who along with a featured set, provided most of the backing music for the night's performers. The coronation's guest artist, however, was Romain Virgo who delivered an engaging set of love songs. At the end of his performance, while he was attempting to exit the stage, Thombs asked Virgo to return so that she could publicly thank him for sticking to his passion for music since childhood. Virgo, is one of the few winners of the Digicel Rising Stars competition who has managed to achieve some semblance of stardom since the win. His set included his own 'Rich in Love' as well as his renditions of 'Soul Provider' and 'Don't You Remember'.

The Miss Jamaica Festival Queen 2014 Coronation took place on Saturday, July 19. It is a part of the slate of activities annually staged to mark Jamaica’s Independence. The coronation ceremony is one of a slate of events stretching across the emancipendence period and culminating on the island's Independence Day, August 6. 2014 marks Jamaica's 52nd year of independence.