Bp Trinidad & Tobago and the Renegades Steel Orchestra signed a document symbolizing their continued commitment to each other at the Trinidad Hilton on Wednesday 30 June 2010. The occasion was a function to mark the 40th Anniversary of the bpTT/Renegades partnership. The Chairman and CEO of bpTT Mr. Robert Riley, President of Renegades Mr. Michael Marcano and Deputy Permanent Secretary in the Ministry of Arts and Multiculturalism Mr. Vel Lewis, signed the document. Affixing their signatures as witnesses were the captain of Renegades Ms. Candice Andrews and captain of the Renegades Youth Steel Orchestra Ms. Latoya Dufont.
Addressing the function, the bpTT Chairman and CEO said that his companies association with the Renegades has been a highly rewarding experience. ‘…Rewarding in that it has allowed us as an international business corporation to make a contribution to the growth and development of one of the most distinctive elements of the culture of Trinidad and Tobago – the steel pan. Rewarding, because it has given us the opportunity to make a positive difference in the lives, livelihood, and welfare of hundreds of ambitious young men and women in this country as a whole and in the suburbs of East Port of Spain. Rewarding also, because through our involvement with this steel orchestra we have been able to showcase the musical talent of this country to the rest of the world.’
The Captain of Renegades Ms Candice Andrews had earlier welcomed guest including The President and Secretary of Pantrinbago, players of both the Renegades Steel Orchestra and the
Renegades Youth Steel Orchestra, arrangers and past captains of the band, the chairman, secretary and other representatives of the Renegades Senior Members Association, staff of bpTT and other invited guest.
Ms Andrews said that she was sure that none of signatories to the first contract between the then Amoco Trinidad Oil Company (now bpTT) in 1970, would have imagined that the relationship they so easily entered into would have blossomed into what it is today. That the signing of a little sponsorship agreement would have had the effect it did on the lives of the men and women that have been a part of the Renegades experience and by extension, on the very history and
development of the national instrument. In thanking bpTT Ms Andrews said, ‘We are eternally grateful to bpTT for their benevolence, for their mentoring, for their brand of collaboration that involves overseeing without interfering. The benefits to us, I can assure you, have been far greater than any pitfalls that may have occurred along the way.’
The President of Renegades Mr. Michael Marcano next gave highlights of Renegades history from the inception of the band in 1948 to present time. He hailed Renegades as the most acclaimed and perhaps highest profiled cultural ambassador of Trinidad and Tobago and of steel band music. The Deputy Permanent Secretary in the Ministry of Arts and Multiculturalism, Mr. Vel Lewis, representing the Minister of Arts and Multiculturalism, the Honourable Winston Peters who was unavoidably absent, congratulated bpTT for being a good corporate citizen.