Starlift celebrates 50 years in style
The Starlift Steel Orchestra showed last Saturday night why a 50th anniversary is called golden.
The steel orchestra, founded in 1967, held a concert over the weekend at the Michael Findlay Pavilion at the Arnos Vale Sporting Complex, to mark their golden anniversary.
Dubbed, âCelebratory Concert,â the event saw the bandâs junior and senior groups exhibiting their skills by playing songs from all genres.
The programme started with the Starlift seniors teaming up with the New Kingstown Chorale, Cantemus and Sean Sutherland (on piano) in a masterfully rendered opening piece, âThe Lordâs My Shepherd,â much to the pleasure of the gathering.
That number was followed by songs like Lionel Ritchieâs âAll night longâ, Mighty Sparrowâs âSa Sa Yeaâ, âThis island is mineâ by Skinny Fabulous and Frederic Chopinâs âMinute Waltzâ.
Guest performers included the New Kingstown Chorale, Cantemus, Sean Sutherland, Arabesque Dancers, Pennola Ross and Duvonne Stewart, who stole the show with a solo on the tenor pan.
Foundation members of the orchestra, including Simeon âSpitterâ Antrobus, Teddy âMiceâ Johnson, Hugh âPaddyâ Williams, Gideon âSocksâ DaSilva and Walton âTannyâ Peters (the orchestraâs first tuner, arranger and inspiration) were honoured at the event.
Earl âSardoâ Sutherland, Bertram âTomâ Maule, and Vernon Coombs, one of the bandâs early arrangers and conductors were also honoured.
This year has been an exceptional one for Starlift, as in addition to attaining their 50th anniversary, the orchestra claimed its 22nd Panorama title during the annual Panorama competition, which was held as part of the 40th anniversary of Vincy Mas.
The orchestra, which has as its captain Roddy Dowers, usually boasts of being the entity with the most wins of any steel orchestra in the world.
Other persons associated with Starlift include Kingsley âHeroâ Roberts (arranger/conductor) and Duvonne Stewart and Dante Pantin, who are arrangers. The orchestra was founded in 1967 in the Old Montrose/New Montrose area. â