Although the Panorama final is just over two weeks away, NLCB Buccooneers is already one of this year’s success stories.
In its first attempt at performing in the large band category of the competition, the band has already made it to today’s semi-final round at the Queen’s Park Savannah, Port of Spain.
The band is expected to perform David Rudder and Voice’s (Aaron St Louis) Madness in position 14.
“We are naturally elated because we are taking a different step and jumping into uncharted waters and for the first time, doing this good, it is very impressive,” said manager Mervyn Solomon.
He said Buccooneers was confident about making it to the finals.
“We are confident because were looking at the point structure going forward and with a little strengthening, I think the band could make it to the finals. We are going to give it our best shot.”
Solomon, who has managed Buccooneers since 2014, said the move from the medium to large band category was long in the making.
“For some time now the band has been considering doing that and our arranger Seion Gomez, already arranges for another medium band, Courts Sound Specialists (of Laventille) so we decided this year to step up to the large band.”
Solomon said Buccooneers, which has as an active stage side, performs every week at the Sunday School street party in the village.
“This has served us in good stead because it keeps the band together an active.”
Solomon said Gomez also has a warm rapport with the players.
“The way the arranger teaches the music, it is not difficult for the players to pick up. He has a good core of players at Buccooneers and we play pretty frequently at events.” He said Buccooneers, formed in 1967, has a wide repertoire of music. The band won the Panorama competition in the medium category in 2013 as well as the Tobago House of Assembly Panorama title on five occasions. It also went a government-sponsored tour of Canada in 1981.
Another Tobago large band, RBC Redemption Sound Setters, did not qualify for the semifinals. Some 14 large bands are expected to participate in today’s competition. Starting time is 1 pm.