'Awesome' pan final

Potential Symphony placed second at Panorama medium band final at Dwight Yorke Stadium last Sunday. - David Reid
Potential Symphony placed second at Panorama medium band final at Dwight Yorke Stadium last Sunday. - David Reid


This was how Pan Trinbago president Beverly Ramsey-Moore on Monday described Tobago's historic hosting of the National Panorama medium conventional bands final on Sunday night at the Dwight Yorke Stadium, Bacolet.

"I do not have words to describe. It was awesome. I am at a lost for words," she told Newsday on Monday.

"It seemed as though Tobagonians came out with a vengeance on Sunday night to prove to the world that we are in this thing too. There was a feeling like 'We cannot let Mrs Ramsey-Moore down because this is a historical event and we want to be a part of this history.'"

The crowd reacts at the finals of the National Panorama medium band category on Sunday at the Dwight Yorke Stadium. - David Reid

Ten steelbands, including three from Tobago, participated in the final.

In the end, NGC Couva Joylanders won the competition with a lively performance of Winston Scarborough's It's My Turn. The piece was arranged by Stefon West.

Barataria band Potential Symphony and Tobago's Katzenjammers Steel Orchestra placed second and third, respectively.

Saying she has been inundated with phone calls since the event, Ramsey-Moore believes the competition is the biggest cultural show ever held in Tobago, rivalling even the island's signature event, Tobago Jazz Festival.

Ramsey-Moore, who revealed Pan Trinbago had pumped some $2.5 million into the show, said she didn't expect the turnout would have been so massive.

She added the event gave credence to her view that people need to understand the power of culture and community development.

"When there is an investment in culture and community development, you invest in the grassroots."

She said there should be an investment in panyards.

"When you build a panyard, you not only touching one individual, you touching that person, the player, the grandmother, the grandfather, the aunty, the nennen. Pan is inter-generational."

Tobago band Katzenjammers copped third place at the Panorama medium band final last Sunday. - David Reid

Ramsey-Moore said like any event, particularly one of that magnitude, there were some minor teething issues in getting the Trinidad steelbands across to Tobago but these were quickly resolved.

She said this experience was not unfamiliar to the members of steelbands on the island, who, over the years, have had to travel to Trinidad for competitions.

She said as manager of Katzenjammers, she has had close ties with steelband practitioners from Trinidad.

"Over the years as a band manager – our arranger is from Trinidad; our tuners are from Trinidad; we buy our jerseys from Trinidad; our flags and our banners from Trinidad. And, we are saying from a Pan Trinbago perspective, that some of that money must now be invested on the island of Tobago, because we are Trinidad and Tobago."

NGC Couva Joylanders took the winning spot at the Panorama Medium Band final at Dwight Yorke Stadium. - David Reid

Ramsey-Moore thanked the National Carnival Commission (NCC), Tobago House of Assembly and Tobago Festivals Commission for ensuring that patrons enjoyed the competition.

"It is the first time but it will not be the last time."

She said seasonal pan is now a thing of the past as she praised members for year-round activities.

"There is no season for pan in TT, and when we say pan, we say TT. Pan unifies. Pan connects. Pan is happy music. Pan is therapeutic music."


"‘Awesome’ pan final"

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