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Young pannists told to own the steel pan

Young pannists told to own  the steel pan


Marla Nanton, the featured speaker at the graduation ceremony of the Starlift Steel Orchestra summer programme last Saturday, has called on the inductees into the steel pan family to “own the instrument”.{{more}}

In an interactive delivery, Nanton told those present, especially the graduates, “… It is our region which has given to the rest of the world this beautiful instrument …. We have to take ownership of it”.

Nanton therefore called on the youngsters to care for the pan.

“In the pan yard, you should never abuse the steel pan… play pan (as) we no longer say beat pan …. Pans are delicate and they are expensive…. Clean them regularly, handle them carefully,” Nanton advised.

Nanton also noted that music on a whole is like a jealous lover who wants to consume all of their time.

But she advised: “The good thing about music, is that you are occupied in a positive way and as you give of your time, you reap the benefits”.

She admitted that playing the steel pan could be a challenge, but the benefits derived served persons in good stead.

“Playing the pan may seem rigorous and challenging, but the discipline of having to practise and concentrate deeply will help you as players to become more focused – an asset that can be transferred to other areas of your life, like school and eventually work,” Nanton explained.

Nanton, the present music director of the South East Steel Orchestra, asked the players who have just found the art of playing the steel pan to play it with pride.

She and others present then got a taste of what the 58 new players had learnt over the seven weeks of training, under the guidance of Kingsley “Hero” Roberts.

Displaying some dexterity, the trainees displayed their skills, as they belted out Stevie Wonder’s “I just called to say I love you”.

Besides Nanton, Oneka Morgan, the recently elected president of the Youlou Pan Movement, captain of the Starlift Steel Orchestra Roddy Dowers and Parliamentary Representative for Central Kingstown St Clair Leacock spoke at the graduation ceremony, which was held at the Starlift pan yard at Old Montrose. (RT)