MINISTER of Culture, Tourism and the Arts Randall Mitchell, along with president of Pan Trinbago Beverly Ramsey-Moore, marked the launch of Panorama 2024 at a celebration at the Exodus panyard on Eastern Main Road, St Augustine on Sunday
“We have panoramas all over the world, but this is the home to the greatest steelpan competition in all of the world,” Mitchell said. “This competition gave birth to some of the best organisations and best steelpan players.
He said the Government had set aside just under $5 million for remittances for steelbands, and $2 million to support unsponsored steelbands to ensure those bands had assistance with their expenses during the Panorama season.
“Ladies and gentlemen, in 2024 you can expect the government to support this significant and most powerful force that is the steelpan movement,” he said.
Ramsey-More thanked the steelpan community for its support in 2023, noting that as a result, events saw an increase in revenue.
“We have moved ourselves from a state of insolvency to a state of solvency at this time,” she said.
She said the first event after the launch would be the single-pan band competitions, which will start in Tobago.
“We say pan is a community’s soul. So for us it is more than a competition, it is a celebration of our heritage, an ode to unity and a testament to our love for the steelpan.”
Pan lovers flocked to the Exodus panyard for the launch, which hosted winners from last year’s competitions including Panorama Single Pan winners San Juan Chord Masters, Medium Band champs Katzenjammers and Panorama National Champions BP Renegades.
One pan lover, who called himself Charlie Brown, danced the night away as steelbands played.
He told Newsday pan had been in his blood since he was a boy.
“I have always pushed pan,” he said “Ever since from small, I always supported and pushed pan. This year for Panorama I will enjoy myself. I always do.”