To Whensteeltalks, the Steelpan Community, and PanTrinbago,
The Republic of Trinidad and Tobago has definitely hit a low point when innocent pan men are afraid to go to their rehearsals with the fear of being shot and killed by those people in the country who are not living a traditional or true Trini way of life.
Pan-men Henry Cyrus and Wendell Joseph (RIP) were both killed in their perspective panyards over the last week or so. Beyond that, others were injured including a young schoolboy and an up and coming arranger, composer, panist, wife and mother, Ms. Avis Bruce. It would be very fitting for Pan Trinbago to dedicate Panorama 2011 to these two pan men and their families. This is ought to be Pan Trinbago’s overture on behalf of the Steel pan community to recognize the dedication love and most of all the unselfishness of these two pan men. Beyond that, it would show those vagabonds completing these horrendous crimes that panmen do not condone any form of violence. Pan-men have always been revolutionaries changing the stigma and ideologies of people on a constant basis. When we all cross the stage this year, we should play “the Beautiful Music” for these beautiful souls as they would have done in their perspective bands.
I hope Pan Trinbago can seize upon this opportunity to undertake this protocol to give the assurance that despite all the obstacles our pan men face, that pan music is the source of our survival. This is not a petition but a request!
This is a good and thoughtful request Kenneth & Kenrick and Pan Trinbago should act on it.
Yes i agree that this Panorama should be dedicated to these fallen soldiers of the Pan Army. A few years ago this behaviour took place in several pan yards in the Arima are but was quickly nipped in the bud. I hope that the police and army together can immediately quell this resurgence. Pan Players should wear a black arm band to show their grief and solidarity.
Pan people are surely under siege this year first from the minister of culture and now the thugs that defile our communities. These persons were not in any gangs, this is just intimidation by the idiotic thugs against anything that is orderly and not criminal
As someone who sometimes begins his show with Panorama performances, I will do a brief segment on this tragedy. WBAI is currently in our winter fund raising drive, so I won't be able to spend to much time on this, since I must focus on riaising funds. However, I hope Gypsy Peters will give a great deal of thought to his negative comments about Pan, and do everything within his powers, to provide the necessary security for these priceless Players.
Maybe Pan Trinbago can use these tragedies to refocus their energies on rebuilding this institution for the betterment of the Panplayers. Their focus should include: a) making Pan a part of the musical curriculum in schools, beginning with elementary school right through the university level, with the appropriate recognized accreditations given to other musical instruments; b) building an permanent institution where Pan can be heard year round, even if it's used as a Tourist attraction; c) the government should transform Pan Yards into Pan Institutions where visitors won't have to walk through mud and other obstacles to enter these venues; and d) appropriately compensate these players financially, while elevating them to the same status given to other entertainers.
Considering how many people, both young and old, male and female, and nationalities who dedicate their time and energies to this wonderful instrument, especially worldwide, I believe that it is high time that the Government of Trinidad and Tobago, accorded the Pan and its Players all of the accolades and protections given to any endangered species. After all, didn't Gypsy indicate that Pan is dying? Then in his current official position, shouldn't he preserve and protect this endangered tradition?
Stephen The Soca Warrior
Dedication is good, but remember funerals are not the time for reunions. Needed are Prime Minister and Leaders of Steelpan Orchestras Team Work Meetings starting immediately and scheduled on a date specific, say the first Saturday in each month, there after.
Horace L. Morancie
718 495 4977