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Everything Related to the Steelpan Instrument and Music

Orville Wright - Educator, Performing Artist & Steelpan Supporter

Orville Wright, MA

Areas of Expertise

African and African-American music studies


MA, Cambridge College

Additional Information

Assistant Professor Orville Wright's page 

Orville Wright started his musical training at a very early age in Trinidad & Tobago taking piano lessons, and took the Associated Royal School of Music exams reaching Grade VIII in both practical and theory. While studying classical music, he developed a flair for playing calypso (indigenous music of T&T) and thus began his non-classical music track.

Mr. Wright left Trinidad in 1970 to further his education and studied arranging and composition at the Berklee College of Music in Boston; he graduated in 1974. Soon after he began a twenty-eight-year affiliation with that institution; first as a faculty member for 13 years, and then as Chair of the Ensemble Department for fifteen years. While teaching at Berklee he played keyboard accompaniment for a number of Broadway shows that were playing in Boston at the time; including The Wiz, The Best Little Whorehouse in Texas, and Cats. Mr. Wright is also adept in the playing of the steel pan and taught a steelband class at Berklee during his tenure there.

He wrote arrangements for a number of Calypsonians based in the U.S., most notably King Wellington, and led his own quintet in Boston for fifteen years. While at Berklee he led a team of fellow faculty members in performances and classes at the Polish Jazz Camp near Warsaw, Poland, between 1990 and 1992. He has traveled extensively; teaching and playing in South Africa, Italy, Japan, Malaysia, and Puerto Rico. He recorded an album in Japan as a member of the Berklee All-Stars. From 1992-2002, Mr. Wright served as a consultant to Pan Trinbago, the parent body for the Steelband Association in Trinidad and Tobago. During that period he reviwed and rewrote the criteria for steelband competitions in Trinidad. He also served as the Chief Adjudicator for the "Pan is Beautiful" and "Panorama" competitions in Trinidad.

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Has Orville passed too?

Sorry to be the bearer of bad news, but Orville passed late yesterday evening.   This is confirmed by a close friend of the family.



Condolences to the Wright family.

Is this a confirmed report? Since Sunday reports have been flying around of Mr. Wright's demise. This must be very distressing to his family.

Is Orville Wright  alive? I  have been hearing conflicting reports.

Dear Pan Lovers,

Please be informed that Orville Wright is alive ... he may not, however, be as well as we would like him to be.What is needed  badly is a whole lot of prayers for his recovery. Pass it on.

Hollis it is refreshing to see that there are still people that believe in the power of prayer, will lift up Orville.

RIP Orville.  You will be missed. Heaven knows, there is much more music up there now!!!!!   Condolences to his family.

Rest In Power….


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