Tobago bands in the Small bands’ category of the 2019 Panoram finals taking their A-game to Skinner Park, San Fernando next Thursday.
Five Tobago bands - C&B Crown Cordians (Crown Point); Uptown Fascinators (Scarborough); Alpha Pan Pioneers (Scarborough); T&TEC New East Side Dimension (Belle Garden) and West Side Symphony (Patience Hill) will play in the finals.
In an interview with Newsday Tobago, Assistant Manager of C&B Crown Cordians, Patrick Clarke, said the band’s goal at this point was to make it into the top five at the finals.
“I am very elated… the players practised real hard for this, this is one part of our goal (getting into the finals0 but our hope is to be in the top five of the national finals,” he said.
“I won’t say we are 100 per cent ready because there are areas that we still need to fine tune a bit based on the judges’ comment… we want to fine tune them and see if we improve and increase our opportunity to get into the top five,” Clarke said.
T&TEC New East Side Dimensions Vice Captain, Maurice Muir said while he wasn’t satisfied with the placing of the band, he was happy with the actual performance.
“I think that we could have really done better. The type of practice that we got on the day itself… the area that we had to place our pans made it very difficult for us to get the band organised and then after a few other times we had to move our pans to allow other bands to pass, so it made it very difficult for us,” he said.
“At this time, we are in preparatory mode, I won’t say that we are ready… we come from the eastern end of Tobago and we have lots of traveling to do from Belle Garden to Scarborough, down on the boat then to San Fernando, to move the racks backward and forward, this poses some challenges for us. But we would be ready for Thursday’s finals,” he said.
Manager of Uptown Fascinators, Salisha James, who is also Chairman of Pan Trinbago, Tobago region, said she was proud of her players.
“I am very proud of our band, Uptown Fascinators. Many of our players have been with us from inception of this band. We have worked extremely hard to prepare for this year’s Panorama; the players’ dedication and commitment have paid off.
“We are also grateful to have a dedicated arranger who has been with us for the past three years,” she said
“Going into finals, we are continuing to practice with positivity and good energy. We are hopeful that we would have a great outcome to a fantastic Panorama season,” James said.
Meanwhile, two-time national Medium band champions, Black Rock’s Katzenjammers Steel Orchestra, performing the late Winston Bailey’s (Shadow’s) Stranger, and NGC Steel Xplosion, of Carnbee, with Irwin Reyes Johnson’s (Scrunter’s) Sing In De Party, also advanced in their category for the finals.
Another band, the Buccoo-based NLCB Buccooneers, playing in the Large band category, made it into the semi-finals but narrowly missed a spot in the March 2 final at the Queen’s Park Savannah, Port of Spain.