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Held on the Friday before Trinidad and Tobago Carnival, ‘Canboulay’ is a reminder of what makes Trinbago Carnival unique, and why Carnival in on the islands is celebrated the way it is.

A section of Piccadilly Street, Port of Spain is cordoned off and flanked with bleachers, turning part of the road into a stage. The event begins before sunrise, at roughly 04:00, with a re-telling of the history of the Canboulay Riots. This is performed as a play, and portrays the descendants of freed, African slaves coming against opposition of their Carnival celebrations by the British government of the early 1880s.

The theatre concludes roughly around 05:30, around the time the black sky begins to blue. The ends of the roadway are opened, allowing varieties of musicians, tamboo bamboo, jumbies, jab, whipmasters, and other forms of oldmas to perform their ways through.