PORT-AU-PRINCE, Haiti, Feb. 15 (UPI) -- Three days of national mourning and fasting, along with fundraising efforts, replaced earthquake-ravaged Haiti's pre-Lenten Carnival, performers said.
Carnival, or kanaval, would have ended Tuesday, the day before Ash Wednesday, had the government not canceled it, The Miami Herald reported.
"Are we broken? Yes," said Eric Gaillard, a Carnival reveler who recorded buildings collapsing during the magnitude-7 earthquake Jan. 12 from the balcony of his home in Port-au-Prince's Pacot neighborhood. "The worst -- there is no leadership. The government is not providing strong guidelines. It's not giving us a vision of hope ... "
Instead of preparing to perform during Carnival, some recording artists released songs on iTunes or through social media to help raise money for relief.
"I don't think anybody's heart is on the music," Michel Martelly, Haiti's konpa king known as Sweet Micky, told the Herald from his Port-au-Prince home. "The dimension of this tragedy is beyond people's imagination."
Haiti's political and religious leaders recently exhorted Haitians to be strong, put their heads together to build a new society.
This year's Carnival theme? "Building a New Path."
Many artists, including singer Roberto Martino, frontman for the Miami band T-Vice, said they couldn't recall when Carnival was canceled.
"It was the first time I had my Carnival song ready a month early," Martino said. "There was such a positive vibe before the quake; everything was moving forward in the country."