[Goanet] VIVA CARNIVAL- Lyrics of Konkani song "CARNIVAL" by Seby F. & Chorus!

domnic fernandes jyodom at hotmail.com
Fri Feb 24 10:51:26 PST 2006


Carnival is traditionally a Roman Catholic and, to a lesser extent, 
Christian Orthodox celebration.  The Carnival season is a holiday period 
during the two weeks before the Christian fast or Lent.  The origin of the 
name “Carnival” is unclear as there are several theories.  The most commonly 
known theory states that the name ‘carne’ or ‘carnovale’, from Latin 
‘carnem’ (meat) + ‘levare’ (lighten or rise), literally means “to remove the 
meat”, or “stop eating meat”.  It has also been claimed that it comes from 
the words ‘caro’ (meat) and ‘vale’ (Farewell); hence, “Farewell to meat” 
(or, of course, farewell to the flesh, letting go of the earthly or bodily 
self).  Yet another theory states that it originates from the Latin ‘carrus 
navalis’, which was some kind of cart carrying a statue of a god in a 
religious procession at the annual festivities in honor of the Greek god, 

Most commonly, the season began on Septuagesima, the third from the last 
Sunday before Ash Wednesday, but in some cases it started as early as 
Twelfth Night, continuing until Lent.  This period of celebration and 
partying had its origin in the need to use up all remaining meat and animal 
products such as eggs and butter before the fasting season.  The celebration 
of Carnival ends on ‘Mardi Gras’ (French for “Fat Tuesday”, meaning Shrove 
Tuesday), the day before Ash Wednesday when the rigor of Lent’s 40 days of 
fasting and sacrifice begin.

February is mostly Carnival time in Goa.  It is the only State in India 
which is renowned for Carnival celebrations.  For three days and nights, the 
legendary king Momo takes over the State and the streets come alive with 
color.  Momo is the king of Chaos and is elected to preside over the 
three-day festivities.

Foreigners and people from other parts of India schedule their visits to Goa 
to coincide with the festivity.  Street plays, songs and dances are 
performed before an enthusiastic, responsive audience.  Carnival float 
parades depicting popular themes are taken out in procession.  Until a 
couple of years ago, the Floats took place only in the capital but now they 
also take place in main towns.  Cultural functions and competitions abound 
in the three days of revelry.  Carnival of Goa has no religious undertones 
and has come to be a cultural highlight of the State, rather than of the 

The weeklong event is a time of festivity.  The Goa Carnival, celebrated on 
the three days just before Lent, is an integral part of the Portuguese 
heritage of the State that was a dominion of Portugal till December 19, 
1961.  The Carnival epitomizes a fun-loving culture, characteristic of Goa.

Today, the Carnival in Goa has not only become a big annual event at home 
but it has also become a special attraction in Float Parade 
participation/competition at the Republic Day in New Delhi – this year we 
bagged the 2nd prize!

Half a century ago, Carnival in Goa was celebrated on a low note and was 
commonly known as ‘Intruz’.  People, especially in South Goa, eagerly looked 
forward to having a gala time during the three days of Intruz when several 
groups would enact short skits known as “zomnir khell” (play on the ground). 
  For drops, they used a “kapodd” (cotton sari) which they fixed to two 
trees or bamboo sticks.  The entry of a scene was made from one end of a 
kapodd and exit from the other.  There was no music accompaniment; they 
mostly used “khali petrolacho dhobo” (empty kerosene tin) and beat it with a 
stick.  Sometimes, a small drum and a “ghumot” accompanied a group.  The 
drummer hung the drum around his neck and played it as they walked from one 
spot to the other to enact skits.  He also gave good drum accompaniment to 
scenes, especially whenever fights took place.  Since plays were enacted on 
sandy ground, the actors’ bodies would get covered with sand after a fight 
scene, which they dusted off with a shirt or a piece of cloth before the 
next skit.  The skits were short but they were of high quality.  Most of the 
actors belonged to the fisher folk and they enacted their roles with great 
precision.  Only men participated in the skits.

Carnival meant color.  In Bardez, people went around singing and throwing 
color packets at each other.  It was almost impossible for anyone to cross a 
road during the three days without receiving color on his/her dress.  For 
this reason, people refrained from wearing good, white/whitish clothes; they 
mostly wore old, colored clothes.  Special “puddieo” (packets) packed with 
powder in different colors were on sale everywhere.  However, the main 
attraction of Carnival was a variety of masks in different shapes and sizes.

For children, Carnival was immense fun!  We planned in advance and bought 
Carnival-related material like color packets, masks, etc. from Mapusa.  We 
also borrowed from our friends and neighbors things like walking sticks, 
hats, kapodd, gloves, shoes, frocks, etc.  A role was assigned to each one 
of the group members.  We then dressed according to the role – young girl, 
boyfriend, elderly woman, old man, doctor, comedian, clown, etc.  I always 
dressed as a girl and enacted a girl’s part.  I covered my hair with a 
scarf, wore ladies shoes and made sure that I did not wear my sister’s 
dress; I always borrowed one from a girl from the next ward.  We disguised 
ourselves in such a way that it was difficult for people to guess our 
identity; we also disguised our voices.  Our group would then tour each 
ward.  We would begin at around 4:00 p.m. and return home before the Angelus 
bell rang.  We carried enough color packets with us to throw at people who 
passed by us and at our friends and neighbors.  In addition, we carried 
“Cuticura” face powder tins with us - of course without our parents’ 

Each one of us carried an empty tin and a stick with us and we went on 
beating the tins as we walked from house to house.  As soon as we arrived at 
a house, we enacted a small 5-minute silent skit with comedy side show.  
Every head of the family gave us money – 4 or 8 annas, but we received big 
money, one or two rupees, from Africanders who had returned home for good 
from Africa.  The money collected was kept with me.  We counted the money on 
the last day of Carnival and distributed it equally.  Each one of us had to 
tell our parents how much we had earned; they felt happy for us.  Since Lent 
began the next day, we could not spend the money immediately; our parents 
were strict about fasting.  We had to wait at least until the first Sunday 
of the Lent to go to church for “poilo Pas” (the first Passion-play.)  As 
soon as church service and Pas was over, we rushed to the bhojekar/bhojekarn 
and khottkotteavalo and bought bhoje, khottkottem and milam from them.  We 
bought chirmuleo, laddu, pipirmittam ani ghodde from posorkar with the 
remaining money on our way to school.  Yes, those were the good old days!

Here are the lyrics of one of the oldest songs of Seby F. from one of late 
Chris Perry’s earlier cassettes “Carnival in Goa”, which is bound to put us 
in the Carnival mood:

CARNIVAL by Seby F. & Chorus

Hurray!  Hurray!
Viva Carnaval!


Aiz dis vortovta khoxecho
Urben uddon nachpacho
Kiss ghevnk zata konneim konnancho
Kiteak dis vortovta Carnavalacho
Aiz dis vortovta khoxecho
Urben uddon nachpacho
Kiss ghevnk zata konneim konnancho
Kiteak dis vortovta Carnavalacho

Vorsak ek pavtti, Carnaval ieta
Soglle Goenkar, khoxi zata
Ganva-ganvanim, muzgam vazoita
Sogllo lok Carnaval gazoita

Aiz dis vortovta khoxecho
Urben uddon nachpacho
Kiss ghevnk zata konneim konnancho
Kiteak dis vortovta Carnavalacho

Hurray!  Hurray!

Chedde konnaimcheai,cheddvank ghott dhortai
Konn re konnancher, powder martai
Nachon rosteancher, kantaram kortai
Tin dis Carnaval movjen sartai

Aiz dis vortovta khoxecho
Urben uddon nachpacho
Kiss ghevnk zata konneim konnancho
Kiteak dis vortovta Carnavalacho

Hurray!  Viva Carnival!  Hurray!

Bhurgim-ballam re, kaiborim distai
Dusrech baxechim, nespam nestai
Zanttim ghoranim, ocupad astai
Kombieo, dukram randun san’nam baztai

Aiz dis vortovta khoxecho
Urben uddon nachpacho
Kiss ghevnk zata konneim konnancho
Kiteak dis vortovta Carnavalacho
Aiz dis vortovta khoxecho
Urben uddon nachpacho
Kiss ghevnk zata konneim konnancho
Kiteak dis vortovta Carnavalacho

>From Dom’s antique shelf!

Viva Carnival – Fuloi Carnival!!!

Domnic Fernandes
Anjuna/Dhahran, KSA

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