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New York 2011 Steel Orchestra Panorama in REVIEW
New York, USA - The good, the bad, the ugly and things that leave me SMH & LMAO about 2011 New York Panorama. When Steel Talks reviews the 2011 New York panorama season in total.
The week leading up to the Panorama, New York was visited by an earthquake, and then a hurricane. So it was clear this panorama was going to be a rumble. Panorama remains the single most important community-based performing arts event that is Caribbean culture-influenced in America - challenged only by drum and bugle corps competitions and Brooklyn's J’Ouvert celebrations.
It was a long season with all the band launches and pre-panorama activities. The launches were excellent. There was a spirit of camaraderie and cooperation that must exist for the launches to be fruitful. This is not to say that everything was 'peachy cream' and everyone agreed with everyone. Let's just say folks saw the bigger picture, and behaved like adults with self-interest - long enough to get the job done.
It's a sign of the times. Nothing remains unchanged.
Yes, I agree. I am not sure I agree with the reason. I think that there are many reasons, sometimes labeled as 'progress'. The primary reason is the competition which coerces the bands, the arrangers and the followers too to want to win so badly. The second may be the 'classically trained musician judges' who are more impressed with the form than the content arrangers quite rightly are arranging to impress the judges. The third is that the steelband has progressively lost its position as the leader of the street mas and the need for that big tune on the road has disappeared. You may remember that there was a time when steel band tune selection played a big part in determining the road march. So the panorama stage has become the steelbands' concert arena. The judges and the afficionados are now listening for other pleasures. Only the players continue to dance to their own music. Is it a good change or a bad change? I don't know.
Of course I know that Smooth and Trinidad All Stars continues to keep the dance and the jump in its Panaorama selections. I couldn't help that little plug.
To each its own, like everything else a change got to come. While the main stream played tunes made for pan by the calypsoians we have one man Boogsie who composed his own tune. He had a new vision for pan music, then men like Pelham, Smooth and the others caught on. In days of old Anthony Williams invented the Spider Web Pan because he wanted to add a little spice to the pan, Rudolph Charles invented Quatrophonics Pans, 12 Base and 9 Base Pans, Bertie Marshall invented the Amplified Pan. I was at Panorama 2010 and it was fantastic all bands played great except the last band. Years ago steelband men were considered low class but now they are in demand, each band have their supporters and they go to the pan yard to listern to the runs of the tune, by the time Semi finals comes around you know the whole tune so u can sing along and dance freely. Give the arrangers and steelband men more credit, they have come a long way as Boogsie said "Do Something For Pan". Only real pan entuastics will support the art form, this is what the arrangers want to bring to the table, this is how he or she feels in their hearts then we need to appreciate that talent. Keep Pan Alive we must let the whole world know this music is worth embracing.
Your observation is so true, have we also forgotten when bands used to play on the move on the track. Very few bands can still do that. Actually that was one of the most important energies which was produced by the players and the supporters. Pan Trinbago, in attempt to portray a show to showcase to the world and also thinking of getting larger gate receipts, forgot the origin of this competition and the culture of people who created its development. Panorama in Trinidad evolved from the bowels of the poor just where the pan came from, supporters jumping and supporting their band, pushing pan , just taking part , however they could.
Do you remember the new era of Pan round the neck, when Tripolians had the most people on the track jumping?
But, that's the price of progress, is it really progress? or are we playing into the hands of larger countries who will beat us at their game.