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birdsong does it with Distinction

A When Steel Talks Exclusive

Tunapuna, Trinidad & Tobago, W.I. -

The students from the left, standing, are Kimberley Chang, Leeann and Lovenia Victor, Aisha Andall, Alice Duncan, Noorieh Mendoza, Derrianne Dyett, Isoke Noel, and Chrystalanne Eversley.

The students from the left, standing, are Kimberley Chang, Leeann and Lovenia Victor, Aisha Andall, Alice Duncan, Noorieh Mendoza, Derrianne Dyett, Isoke Noel, and Chrystalanne Eversley.

Front row front from left are: Johan Defreitas, Stefan Hosten, Kathryn Defreitas, Jonathan Chang and Christian Wickham.

 

 

Stefan Hosten being presented his certificate with distinction, by steelpan tutor Adelle Joseph of birdsong Steel Orchestra
Stefan Hosten being presented his certificate with distinction, by steelpan tutor Adelle Joseph of birdsong Steel Orchestra

 

Jonathan Chang being presented his certificate with distinction, by steelpan tutor Adelle Joseph of birdsong Steel Orchestra

Jonathan Chang being presented his certificate with distinction, by steelpan tutor Adelle Joseph of birdsong Steel Orchestra

Lovenia Victor being presented her certificate by steelpan tutor Adelle Joseph of birdsong Steel Orchestra

Lovenia Victor being presented her certificate by steelpan tutor Adelle Joseph of birdsong Steel Orchestra

 
 
Derrianne Dyett is being presented her certificate with distinction  by steelpan tutor Adelle Joseph of birdsong Steel Orchestra

Derrianne Dyett is being presented her certificate with distinction  by steelpan tutor Adelle Joseph of birdsong Steel Orchestra

Trinidad - The birdsong Steel Orchestra recently distributed certificates to the 32 successful students who passed their grade 1 Royal School of Music theory examinations. The distribution of these certificates marked the end of the first year of operation of the birdsong Pan Institute, which was established last year in pursuit of the band’s objective of ensuring functional music literacy among the next generation of pan players.

Fifteen of the 32 successful students received distinctions (between 90 and 100) in this examination. The management and members of the band will like to publicly thank all the students who took part in the steelband programme in 2004, with special commendations going to the successful candidates in the grade 1 examinations. All 32 students are presently now preparing to write the grade 2 examination in June 2005.

Persons between the ages of 10 and 18 who are interested in acquiring one of the limited spaces for this year’s birdsong’s Music Literacy Programme please note that application forms will be available from May 1st 2005 at birdsong’s panyard which is located at the corner of Connell and St. Vincent Streets in Tunapuna.

The 2005 edition of the Music Literacy programme will be expanded to and as such will expose participants, in addition to the steelpan to brass instruments, acoustic guitar and piano.

About birdsong Steel Orchestra

birdsong
STEEL ORCHESTRA

Cor. Connell & St. Vincent Streets,
Tunapuna, Trinidad & Tobago, W.I.

birdsong Steel Orchestra, which was formally launched on September 22, 1973, is a non-profit, community based organization with a predominantly young membership base –some 75% of our current membership is under the age of twenty one and more than 50% is still in the formal education system.  The band operates under a constitution that provides for democratic participation of members, and the annual election of officers to an executive, which handles day-to-day management.

For the last 7 years, birdsong’s Panorama arrangements were done by the legendary Rudy “Two Left” Smith.  We have also worked with several other top notch arrangers including Earl Wright (deceased), Len “Boogsie” Sharpe, Cary Codrington, Eddie Quarless, the Headley brothers and Pat Bishop.  Mark Hosten is birdsong's musical director.

Our operations provide an important source of recreation, skill development and, more recently income earning opportunities for the youth of Tunapuna and environs.  In keeping with our community development philosophy, our limited resources are always at the disposal of the community and, as such, our pan theatre, currently located on rented property, is the venue for music educational programmes, community concerts, meetings and sporting competitions.  Over its 30-year existence, our band has participated in every major national steelband competition winning several Jouvert morning “Bomb” competitions and securing a place in the regional and national finals of many panorama competitions. We have also been adjudged best playing steelband on the road at the Tunapuna carnival celebrations on many occasions.

birdsong’s primary mission is to the promotion and development of the national musical instrument.  In pursuit of this mission, we have consistently taken the leadership in structuring approaches to meeting the musical, technical and organizational challenges that must be addressed as we seek to position the steel band movement in the global musical landscape. Using our own resources, we have supported projects aimed at developing solutions to steel orchestra amplification, mobility of the steelband and the perennial problems of resource mobilization.  Most of our work in this regard has been undertaken in collaboration with specialist individuals and organizations in the respective fields – engineers, sound research technicians, steelband pioneers, the Caribbean Industrial Research Institute (CARIRI) and the University of the West Indies.

The band has toured extensively in the Caribbean, including Barbados, St. Vincent and Grenada.  We have also performed at music festivals in several major cities in Venezuela and at the annual Notting Hill carnival celebrations in London in 2000.

Over the last 15 years, our development efforts have increasingly focused on empowering the next generation of steelpan players and, in pursuit of this objective, we have designed and delivered music literacy and related training programmes targeting the youth of our immediate community and the wider Caribbean diaspora.



 

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