Everything Related to the Steelpan Instrument and Music
By \\\\\ Gary Cardinez
Reigning National Panorama Champions, Massy Trinidad All Stars has expanded its horizons beyond “Hell Yard” as the band seeks to diversify into ventures other than music and the business of music. The band has completed the purchase of the property at 42-44 Duke Street, Port of Spain which is in front and to the east of the famous panyard.
This was revealed by manager Beresford Hunte recently when Massy Holdings celebrated the Panorama Champions with an evening of entertainment “Under The Trees” at The Normandie, St Ann’s.
The function was to commemorate All Stars’ ninth Panorama victory this year as well as its 80th anniversary. The news of the acquisition of the building just added to the joy and pride felt by the members on the night. Hunte told the audience the management team had successfully concluded the purchase of the property and they will soon be putting it to use. This he said is a financial investment for the band as they work towards becoming financially self-sufficient.
“We cannot solely depend on contributions and earnings from Panorama performances and other small ventures. This is critical for our growth and development as a social and cultural institution,” Hunte said.
When asked about the purchase, All Stars financial manager, Nigel Williams said, “This is in keeping with our long-term vision to grow not just as a steel orchestra but as a business institution. We have been looking out for things in which to invest and went after this property vigorously.”
Hunte used the opportunity to thank his management team for the hard work they put in to keep the band at the top. He also thanked Massy Holdings CEO Gervase Warner for his passion and interest in the band.
Well said Glenroy this should not be about bragging rights, this should be about more Steel bands owning their own property and cannot be evicted whenever the big boys feel like evicting them. Congratulations Trinidad All Stars I hope to see many Steel bands own their own Pan yard and be self sufficient.
Glenroy and Earl, I don't sense that Lilian is dissing or downplaying the recent accomplishments of All Stars. He congratulated them but also set the record straight to remind us that Renegades was the first to do so, which is visonary. I spent a good part of my youth growing up on Henry Street in PoS and remember hearing the pioneers saying that Renegades could not get kicked out of their Pan Yard because they owned it. Didn't Kim Johnson not research and write about that in one of his publications??? Guffing and puffing your chest when you're proud is part of we culture, not so... ;-)
Congratulations to the Management and Players of Trinidad All Stars on their vision of adding another piece of Duke Street the historic site of the Camboulay Riots to their ownership our address is now 42 44 46 48 Duke Street P.O S way to go Mr Beresford , Mr Nigel, Mr Jason, M's Denise and the rest of the executive .....................
Congrats to All Stars and Renegades for Having the Fore-sight to Purchase their Pan Yards. Well Done. My Question is What would have Happened to Desperadoes if they had Purchased a Spot in Laventille, seeing that every Year they have to Come to the City to Practice for the Panorama Competition. I hope no other Steelband ever have that Problem.
THAT Massy Trinidad All Stars has moved into business, as an investor in high-value Port of Spain real estate, marks a historic development for that leading steelband. Hell Yard, its evocative and legendary address, is now demonstrably too small to contain the band’s boundless 2015 aspirations.
Massy Trinidad All Stars has now become owner of the 42-44 Duke Street property lying immediately to the south and east of the landmark panyard. Expectations inevitably arise for the band to prove itself not just as a landlord, but also as a property developer.
The 80-year old band may justifiably boast of a distinguished track record in winning Panorama competitions and, lately, and more astonishingly, Carnival Band of the Year titles. At this big and enviable juncture, All Stars is mandated by history to demonstrate for the steelband movement’s community organisations the capacity to conquer fields beyond those of music and Carnival.
Other pan sides have traditionally been even over-dependent on private and public sector support. All Stars is now set to lead the way, in another direction. The iconic Duke Street, Port of Spain band itself enjoys an important sponsor’s relationship conglomerate Massy Holdings, whose name it bears.
But the band, which claims a “long-term vision” for its future growth, evidently commands the finances, and is apparently also capable of drawing upon the necessary human resources elements, to realise the growth it pursues. As financial manager Nigel Williams said in an interview with Gary Cardinez, the All Stars vision is “to grow not only as a steel orchestra but also as a business institution”.
In the evolution from pan players and mas players into business participants, All Stars’ executives have shown commendable focus and drive. The band “went after this property vigorously,” said Mr Williams.
The Trinidad All Stars story—from backyard to business suite—appears certain to figure in the “Carnival studies” just now being offered by UTT. The university is offering a Master of Arts programme that entails study of the history of Carnival, calypso and steelband, plus “ethno-musicology and entrepreneurship”.
This is what happens when you have Visionaries running an organization. I would like to find out how they plan to share the profit from these investments, how does a member today benefit?