Una Vainita

— Victor Gil |||//
Pan campers graduate

The camp, which Gumbs described as a fun and entertainment camp, was done in collaboration with steelpan manufacturer, Panland, and sponsors Republic Bank.

At the graduation ceremony, held at the Community Centre in the Angostura Complex, Michael Cooper, chairman of the LSFF and CEO of Panland informed the gathering of parents and well-wishers that he was happy that the camp was back in operation after quite a number of years in limbo. He said when it started 18 years ago, the objective was on the development of the steelband community of Laventille and with special focus on the youth.

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Indeed, that objective hasn’t changed as the campers were exposed to an education in pan which, Cooper said, the children couldn’t get anywhere else but in Laventille.

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He said every morning for one hour, campers had a session dealing with life skills.

Then there was the musical component.

The children were educated on the history and the development of pan in various forms.

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One such medium was the showing of the docudrama, PAN! Our Music Odyssey, after which they were asked to discuss and analyse the film.

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They also had a lecture from Kareem Brown of the National Steelband Symphony Orchestra on the topic of careers, since Brown made pan his life.

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Sessions in pan making and the different processes and a visit to the pan factory added to the experience for the children.

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Then in the final days, the children were made to go on the internet and research successful pan musicians such as Ellie Mannette, Robbie Greenidge, Bertie Marshall and Lincoln Noel, as well as the long-standing steelbands in the land, then do a presentation on what they researched.

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Cooper stated those presentations were quite dramatic.

A session with the Laventille Rhythm Section was the final session of the camp before graduation.

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Cooper praised all 36 campers, most of whom never played the pan before, for their discipline, projects done and their analytical thinking.

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Caught up in the spirit of the celebration, Damian Cooper, Marketing Manager, Republic Bank couldn’t help but tell his story about pan and himself.

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He related his experience while in university overseas and having to do a document on music appreciation when he chose the pan but realised that he didn’t know much about the instrument.

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Following calls to his homeland and heavy research he couldn’t help but feel a great sense of pride having learnt that such a small country as Trinidad and Tobago can have such an instrument with so great an impact on the world.

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It is for this reason he said he was excited about the camp and so much knowledge about the pan was imparted on the children in such a short space of time.

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Cooper the banker then congratulate the enthusiastic children for taking advantage of the opportunity given to them and urged them not to forget what they have learnt.

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During the graduation celebration the campers played “Ode To Joy” and “Old Lady Walk a Mile and a Half ” to thunderous applause

.

© Victor Gill Ramírez.

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© Victor Gill.

Tags: Música

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