The Krewe of Freret plans for a special 2020 ride rolling into the inaugural “Shorty Gras” concert.
The krewe has partnered with Troy “Trombone Shorty” Andrews as its official Grand Marshal. Following the parade is the first ever ‘Shorty Gras’ concert ball, on Saturday, Feb. 15.
Trombone Shorty & Orleans Avenue will headline a diverse, top-tier local lineup that Andrews helped curate.
The ‘Shorty Gras’ line up includes Cash Money Records producer and deejay Mannie Fresh; “rap-caberet” performance artist Boyfriend, backed by members of the Revivalists; the Soul Rebels, Sweet Crude; and Big Chief Monk Boudreaux & the Golden Eagles.
Juvenile, Big Freedia, Maggie Koerner and Khris Royal are slated to make special appearances.
“Music is woven into the unique fabric of New Orleans Carnival, and I’m proud to join the Krewe of Freret in putting the sound of our city center stage,” Trombone Shorty said. “Shorty Gras will be the best of Mardi Gras and New Orleans music rolled into one.”
Doors open at 5 p.m. Tickets start at $50 general admission. There are also various VIP options available.
“We are so excited to welcome Trombone Shorty to our Krewe. Music is an essential component of Carnival, and now we are making it a signature element of our Krewe’s identity,” said Captain Bobby Hjortsberg. “The Krewe of Freret will feature New Orleans music every year in our parade and at the Shorty Gras event.”
To honor the special occasion, the parade has constructed a new signature float featuring a gigantic animatronic of Trombone Shorty and a dazzling light show.
The custom cut out was designed and built by Kern Studios and is over two stories tall, making it the largest prop to ever be featured on a Mardi Gras float. It is one of seven new, state-of-the-art signature floats being unveiled by the krewe this year.
At the tender age of 4, Trombone Shorty took on the instrument. Over the course of his career, he has played with the biggest names in music and served as a New Orleans ambassador to a worldwide audience, having performed on six continents.
The Krewe of Freret took to Instagram to show off a more detailed look of the float before it hits the streets of New Orleans. Check out the “sneak peek” below.
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*SNEAK PEEK* Standing over two stories tall the animatronic @tromboneshorty float prop is the largest ever placed on a Mardi Gras float. Fitting for one of the finest musicians in the history of New Orleans! Link in bio for tickets to Shorty Gras! #shortygras #bemardigras #kreweoffreret #mardigras #mardigras2020
The krewe also unveiled this year’s theme, “The Music of New Orleans.” Keeping up with this year’s theme, floats will also honor such icons as Dr. John, Al Hirt, Professor Longhair and Louis Armstrong as well as Jimi Hendrix and Elvis Presley (who performed in New Orleans).
This year, King Hans Gerwitz and Queen Holly Alvendia will reign supreme over Freret’s ride down St. Charles Avenue. For more on the royal court, click here.
Get a good look at the parade map. It starts for 3:30 p.m.
The parade will follow along the traditional uptown route and roll straight into Mardi Gras World where Shorty Gras will begin, showering throws down on the crowd.
“The Krewe of Freret is well on its way to becoming the next super krewe,” said Barry Kern, the President and CEO of Kern Studios and Mardi Gras World. “Shorty Gras will be a highlight of Carnival, featuring the season’s music, food, and revelry!”
For more information about the Krewe of Freret or to purchase tickets to Shorty Gras, visit the website.