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Visitors Fees and Registration for Panorama 2011

Pan Trinbago is issuing a reminder to steelbands who contract foreigners as players in the National Panorama competitions that they are required to pay dues.


This is outlined in Pan Trinbago’s Constitution Bye Laws under the heading Article 9 – Fees and Dues.

from the news desk of Pan Trinbago


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Foreign Pannists Panorama Registration
Wednesday, 19 January 2011 21:09

Pan Trinbago is issuing a reminder to steelbands who contract foreigners as players in the National Panorama competitions that they are required to pay dues.
This is outlined in Pan Trinbago's Constitution Bye-Laws under the heading Article 9 - Fees and Dues.
The rule reads
"Visitors to Trinidad and Tobago who are performing at the Panorama or Festival with a steelband, shall pay a due of ($100.00 US. or $600.00 TT."
Failure to comply will result in non-performance of player.
Registration forms can be accessed here. (see the link below)

My Response with Analytics
Freedom of speech, and freedom to grow is available to all in most democracies. This also applies to Pan Trinbago. However, this policy of Pan Trinbago need to be reconsidered for a rapid reversal, a sincere apology and a speedy reimbursement with interest to those foreign steelpan players who have already paid this unfair/immoral levy. In Pan Trinbago’s quest to grow the steelpan as a viable revenue generator for culture and the steelpan industry, it is imperative that amendments to their constitution should be reviewed and processed periodically. These managerial reviews would indicate to interested parties that the organization has been evaluating their plans and consulting with stakeholders of the steelpan industry to achieve the best solutions for true consistent growth. I own my steelpans which I proudly purchased in Trinidad & Tobago and I am a soloist on my double seconds, so I don’t need a band to experience the vibes of steelband panorama anymore. However, I love listening to the full steelbands at panorama time and I love advancement for the steelpan industry as a global whole.

The following are some point-by-point hypothetical scenarios for consideration by the exploited foreign steelpan-players upon whom this ridiculous player-tax burden has been imposed by Pan Trinbago. Pan Trinbago must clearly define without any ambiguity who is a foreigner.

Scenario #1 - We the (labelled) foreigners should acknowledge that we really do not belong to Trinidad & Tobago. So let us collectively smile and pay the $100.00US or $600.00 TT, even if you were born in Laventille like I am

Benefit #1 for Pan Trinbago - Pan Trinbago would gain more annual revenues through the foreign-player taxation

Benefit #1 to Foreigners - We the foreign players would have earned the right to update their curriculum vitae annually because we paid the required $100.00 US or $600.00 TT for approximately four weeks of advanced steelpan music lessons and steelpan skills development; even if we did not make it on the grand stage for the panorama

Consequence #1 to Local Steelpan Players - The steelpan crafts-people, players and skilled workers would not inherit much by way of any new financial injection towards from the foreign player tax paid to Pan Trinbago

Scenario #2 - We foreigners should begin to reconsider investing our steelpan dollars were we reside in the foreign lands. This would help us develop the foreign-based steelpan builders, tuners, arrangers and players etc., and end any patriotic dependance on Trinidad & Tobago because of Pan Trinbago’s short-sightedness

Benefit #2 for Pan Trinbago - The limited annual revenues would continue indefinitely, or until a fixed time period in the future (The possible removal of this foreign player fee policy by a different Pan Trinbago administration)

Benefit #2 for Foreigners - The procurement of steelpan instruments for the global foreign-based steelpan projects in school and community orchestras would no longer be aligned or dependent on the Trinidad & Tobago market to supply and service their instruments

Justification for Benefit #2 for Foreigners - Remember, it is a global market place, and filmmakers are given tax credit and incentives to film in certain municipalities/cities to encourage bigger spending into the local economy and create many opportunities and jobs for the residents

Consequence #2 to Local Steelpan Crafts-persons - Competition for the foreign dollars would eliminate Trinidad & Tobago steelpan builders and service providers from the equation when large and small scale purchases are required

Solution - If Pan Trinbago is supposed to be the world governing body for steelpan and the global pan people, then consult with the world through a global forums to be effective leaders, or we would continue to determine our own destiny without Pan Trinbago’s leadership or lack thereof - SIMPLE

Conclusion - If the locals/non-foreigners choose to ignore this foreigner players fee policy because it does not directly affect their pockets; and choose to remain silent to this injustice, then the lessons from the -$200.00 Panorama 2011 experience would have had little to no learning impact on all “players” in the steelpan experience, both local and foreign. A clear road forward must be determined by the people who are affected the most, and this is just the beginning of possible responses from the steelpan people in the diaspora. Do not try to impose draconian policies upon the messengers of steelpan. We are also carrying our responsibility to the other parts of the world just as you are doing in Trinidad & Tobago

Footnote: Remember Lord Nelson’s calypso,”immigration stamp meh (passport), “Foreigner.” I was born on the hill (Laventille), but if they keep reminding me, that I do not belong here, then I have no other alternative but to take all meh business wid meh.


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