WST Global News Division


Pan and Percussion Concert at the University of the West Indies


As part of the Centre for Creative and Festival Arts Showcase Concert Series,  "The Rainmakers", a concert featuring the steelpan and percussion instruments will take place on January 5th 2008 at the University of the West Indies, Trinidad campus. This concert showcases Golden Hands and the UWI percussion ensemble and incorporates some traditional Carnival characters through music, theatre and dance.  The second half of the concert is a theatrical production written by Franka Hills-Headley called “the Rainmakers” featuring all new music composed specifically for pan and percussion by Dr. Jeannine Remy.  Tickets are available at the Centre for Creative and Festival Arts 1 (868) 663-2222 or 1 (868) 662-2002 ex 2510.

Centre for Creative and Festival Arts

The University of the West Indies, St. Augustine


Golden Hands


The Rainmakers

January 5th 2008

Learning Resource Centre, UWI

7.00 p.m.

The dramatic framework of "The Rainmakers" was written by Franka Hills-Headley with music composed by Dr. Jeannine Remy, of Centre for Creative and Festival Arts, UWI.  This is comprised of eight original compositions for the instruments of the steel orchestra and percussion ensemble, which includes marimbas, xylophone, timpani and much more.  "The Rainmakers" production will feature a wide range of genres performed primarily on the steelpan. Performances will incorporate solo, duet, quartet, ensemble and orchestral works, on the full range of steelpan instruments.  Various percussive devices and instruments, dance, voice and drama will highlight the production. This production required the networking and collaboration of young musicians with each other and with professionals of Centre for Creative and Festival Arts, UWI. Golden Hands steelband was founded by Franka Hills-Headley, the Director of the production, approximately 14 years ago. 

The production will be staged in honour of Dr. Anne Marion Osborne - Coordinator of Music, Centre for Creative and Festival Arts, UWI - and Bertrand Kelman, master steelpan builder and tuner. 

Further information is available from the Creative Arts office - Telephone: 1 (868) 663-2141/ 1 (868) 663-2222 (direct lines) or 1 (868) 662-2002 ext. 3622/ 3791/ 2376 or; E-mail Franka Hills-Headley:  or




Golden Hands

In collaboration with

The University of The West Indies

Centre for Creative and Festival Arts Showcase


The Rainmakers

INTRODUCTION:  In April of 2007, Golden Hands Ensemble and soloist Vanessa Headley were invited to perform two original pieces (US composed for Steelpan Ensemble by Vanessa Headley and Tropical Moods for Double Seconds composed by Dr. Jeannine Remy) This was one of the feature performances at the launch of MUSICANOVA, a competition that offers young composers the opportunity to create new music This is a special project of The Music Literacy Trust.  Following this, Golden Hands was again the special guest of the Faculty of Humanities showcase of the Visual and Performing Arts.  It was at this point that Mr. Satanand Sharma, Department Head of The Centre for Creative and Festival Arts (CCFA), invited Golden Hands to stage a production for 2008 that would feature a range of musical genres performed on steelpan.  This would be the second such showcase of the CCFA that is geared to engaging and presenting the artistic endeavours of community groups.  Golden Hands Founder/ Director Franka Hills-Headley welcomed this prospect and set about writing an original dramatic piece structured in such a way as to feature the steelpan and to utilize other artistic elements.


CONCEPT: The Rainmakers are an elite company of musicians that have been veiled in the earth until a defining moment, for a specific purpose. The precise moment of their unveiling, by their sovereign -The King of Rains, occurs during a season of severe drought that has lasted some seven years.  The earth has been burnt to a crisp, and the inhabitants are on the verge of dying.  This means that all life-giving music has ceased. The dastardly actions of an evil monarch, The King of Drought, have almost succeeded in annihilating the entire landscape. 


The first Rainmaker hears and responds to the voice of her Lord, the King of Rains, and emerges out of her deep slumber.  As she rises, she begins playing a beautiful melody in worship.  The strains of this song rise through the heavens to the King.  Tiny drops of moisture ascend to the heavens.  The other Rainmakers are energised and soon, in concert their music produces a little cloud that would sprinkle rain on the earth.  Their communal efforts produce a manifestation of a sparkling new musical expression that transforms the desert space into a luxuriant paradise.

The reigning King of Drought is subjugated. The King of Rains is enthroned.


FORMAT: Musical featuring a wide range of genres performed primarily on the steelpan.  Performances incorporate solo, duet, quartet, ensemble and orchestral works, on the full range of steelpan instruments.  Various percussive devices and instruments, dance, voice and drama will highlight the presentation. The show will incorporate a few traditional Carnival characters.

The first half of the production will highlight all the Golden Hands students, from the toddlers to the teens on the steelpan.  There will be a special guest performance in this segment.  During the  second half  The Rainmakers will be staged.


RATIONALE: The steelpan music culture of Trinidad and Tobago revolves primarily around the Panorama event. The cancellation of the 2006 World Steelband Festival as well as this year’s National Junior Steelband Festival, have both contributed significantly to the erosion of steelband performances.  This does not paint a bright picture for our unique National Instrument.  This production of Golden Hands seeks to broaden the scope of steelpan performances by featuring a major original work such as The Rainmakers.    The preparation required ensures the development of the musicianship of our young pannists and provides avenues for their holistic development as performers.  The concept of pan in the 21st century must encompass the marketing of the instrument in new idiomatic ways, both locally and internationally.  To this end, the presentation of music specifically composed for the steelpan, will definitely revive the interest of many pan music lovers while simultaneously creating a new audience.  For sure, audiences that have been deprived of enjoying the intricate performances of steelbands, for the past three (3) years, will be finally afforded the opportunity to do so.  The production of The Rainmakers has required the networking and collaboration of our young musicians with each other and with professionals of The Centre For Creative and Festival Arts. The Golden Hands Youth Executive has accepted this mantle quite responsibly. Finally, but of no less significance is the maturing of our own young composers.  This is strongly being addressed by The Music Literacy Trust who has endorsed and will be significantly contributing to this venture.




*      To present the National instrument in a dramatic context with other supporting artistic contributions

*      To add significantly to the body of original music, composed specifically for the steelpan.

*      To provide the opportunity for the musical and artistic development of the eighty (80) students of Golden Hands

*      To provide an avenue for interfacing and collaboration between students of Golden Hands and experts in the visual and performing arts of The U.W.I. and the community

*      To provide an opportunity for the students of Golden Hands to participate in a staged production


GOLDEN HANDS: This steelband was founded by Franka Hills-Headley, the Director, approximately fourteen (14) years ago.  With the assistance of Dane Hinds, Assistant Director and Arranger, the band has amassed numerous titles and trophies.  The eighty (80) young musicians of Golden Hands range in age from three (3) years to nineteen (19) years.  The core group, the Golden Hands Ensemble is captained by Vanessa Headley (18), the first student of Golden Hands. 

The other executive members are:

Richardé Bereaux  - Captain II (Public Relations) (18)

Pete Braxton- Vice Captain (19)

Chisara Bailey- Treasurer (18)

Shivonne Squires – Secretary (18)

Keon Marcano- Logistics Coordinator (17)

JoElla Moore – Publicist (18)

Janelle Anthony- Event Coordinator (18)


The Rainmakers Ensemble Members


Vanessa Headley          Double Seconds and Extended Seconds (four sticks)

Richardé Bereaux          Tenor (four sticks)



Vanessa Headley          Double Seconds and Extended Seconds (four sticks)

Richardé Bereaux          Tenor (four sticks)

Keon Marcano               Cello

Chisara Bailey               Bass


Other Ensemble Members


TENORS                                                          DOUBLE SECONDS/DOUBLE TENORS

Pete Braxton                                                     Shivonne Squires

Jonathan Grant                                                  JoElla Moore

Joshua Bedeau                                                  Adriel Bailey

Daron Roberts                                                   Jon Mari Thompson

Opal Murrel

Jor-el Mc Lean


CELLOS/GUITARS                                          BASSES

Janelle Anthony                                                 Viveka Jackson

Jeremy Cowan                                                  Daniella Ishmael

Vanissa James                                                  Khyla Edwards

Anikha Achee


The Dramatic Cast

Joshua Charles

Jonathan Spears

Caryl Hinds

Charlotte Chadee

Tabisha Alexis

Sherelle Squires



Anicia Brooks                            Anika Brooks                             Nicola Stanisclaus

Juffran Baptiste                         Destinee Hernandez                  Carolyn Francis

Atiya Anthony                            Aaliya Ishmael                           Hadassah Grant

Makesi Gooding                         Kwandwayne Joseph                 Stefan Gomez

Aseem Jones                            Luke Ramcharitar


CCFA Percussion Ensemble

David Aarons                Aquil Arrindell                Marcus Ash                   Akisha Audain

Richardé Bereaux          Wendell Bernard            Pete Braxton                 Kareem Brown  

Mikhel Carter                 Rhea Chimming             Michelle Clarke              Avalon Clinton   

Tinika Davis                  Edana Dinali                  Charlene Elcock              Delesse Francis

Ryan Hamilton              Vanessa Headley          Sophia Jemmott               Kern Keizer      

Cherysh Latouche          James Radix                 Shaunelle Ramesar        Danielle Ryan

Marcella Marfan             Marina Marfan               Anna Noel                    Anthony Williams



Franka Hills-Headley


Titles: National Junior Steelband Festival – Winners in Under 21 Ensemble, Duet (Vanessa Headley and Keon Marcano), Solo (Vanessa Headley), Under 16 Solo (Richardé Bereaux )

 Orchestra and Quartet 2nd place)

Musical arrangements and adaptations by Dr. Jeannine Remy


Trinidad and Tobago Music Festival- champions in eight categories in 2003 and 2005 including best soloists Vanessa Headley and Richardé Bereaux)

Musical arrangements and adaptations by Franka Hills-Headley, Dane Hinds and Dr. Jeannine Remy


World Steelband Festival- Ensemble 3rd on two occasions.  Duet 2nd place Solo (Vanessa Headley) 3rd place.  Quartet 5th.

Musical arrangements and adaptations by Franka Hills-Headley, Dane Hinds and Dr. Jeannine Remy


National Junior Panorama – 2003 (Arranger) Dane Hinds 6th

                                          2006 -(Arranger) Vanessa Headley 3rd

                                          2007 ( Arranger) Vanessa Headley 6th


Antigua Moods of Pan 2006 – Five Alive competition – First  non-national band to win this competition.  Arranger Dane Hinds.


Instruments: All Golden Hands Instruments are built and maintained by Mr. Bertrand Kelman, National Award Winner for the invention of the Genesis (G) Pan.


TOURS Washington DC, U.S.A. - 2003

          Delaware, U.S.A.- 2004,2005

          Dominica, West Indies- 2006

          Antigua, West Indies -2006


Dr. Jeannine Remy:



Dr. Jeannine Remy* is a native of Sturgeon Bay, Wisconsin.  She holds a both her Bachelors and Masters degrees from Northern Illinois University and her doctorate from the University of Arizona in percussion performance.  As a percussion and music teacher Dr. Remy has taught at the University of Wisconsin-Oshkosh and Idaho State University.  As a performer she has played in numerous symphony orchestras including: Green Bay (WI), Idaho Falls (ID), Oshkosh (WI), Phoenix (AZ), Pocatello (ID), Rockford (IL), and Tucson (AZ).

During the academic year 2000-2001 Dr. Remy received a Fulbright Grant to research and lecture music in Trinidad at the University of the West Indies (UWI).  Two years later an ethnomusicology position opened up at UWI and Dr. Remy left her tenured position at Idaho State University, sold all of her possessions, and moved to Trinidad.  At The Centre for Creative and Festival Arts she teaches percussion, steelpan, pan arranging, steelpan history and development, steelpan literature, world music, music of the Caribbean.  While she has been in Trinidad she has become the first foreign woman to arrange for a large conventional steelband and a great deal of her music has found its way into the graded steelpan exam books.

This musical composer and arranger is no stranger to T&T.  Her first panorama appearance in Trinidad was with Invaders in 1989.  Since then she has worked with large bands such as Invaders and Hatters Steel Orchestras.  Audiences still talk about her composition entitled “The Attacks and Aftermath of September 11th, 2001” [nicknamed 911] where the World Steelband Music Festival audience listened to in awe to the composition that brought them back to that day in history.  The entire Jean Pierre Complex jumped to their feet and gave the longest standing ovation for the entire evening.

Dr. Remy connected with Golden Hands in 2004 when Frank Hills-Headley asked her to compose a piece Tropical Moods for her daughter, Vanessa Headley, for the upcoming World Music Festival. Vanessa, then fifteen (15) placed third in the World Steelband Festival with her rendition of this piece.  Since this Dr. Remy has composed No Pretty Laces with which Vanessa emerged champion of the Trinidad and Tobago Music Festival.  It was her splendid arrangement of Kitchener’s Nora, and Ole Lady Walk A Mile and a Half, and Sparrow’s Jane and Mr. Walker that placed Golden Hands in Winners Row in the National Junior Steelband  Festival . On two occasions Dr. Remy’s work was rewarded in The Trinidad and Tobago Music Festival by the eight trophies won by Golden Hands on each occasion.

The dramatic framework of the Rainmakers was written by Franka Hills-Headley and presented to Dr. Remy  who composed the music for this drama.  This is comprised of eight (8) original compositions for the instruments of the steel orchestra and a percussion ensemble. 

Remy bio:


SPECIAL HONOURS: The production will be staged in honour of Dr. Anne Marion Osborne, Coordinator of Music, The University of The West Indies and Bertrand Kelman, Master steelpan Builder and Tuner. 



(Ph.D., M. Mus., B.Mus., ARAM, GRSM, LRAM, ARCM, ARCO, Cert. Ed., Dip. Kodaly Concept)


            Anne Marion Osborne has been the recipient of several national and international awards for musical accomplishment since the age of  9.  She received her secondary education at Bishop Anstey High School and undergraduate training at the Royal Academy of Music and the University of London.  She later gained post-graduate diplomas and degrees from the University of Western Ontario, Indiana University-Bloomington and the Kodaly Institute, Kecskemet, Hungary.

            Her history of direct involvement with Pan began in 1988 as a television commentator for Pan is Beautiful V, Steelband Music Festival.  Since then she has continued to serve as adjudicator at most of the major national pan competitions in Trinidad and Tobago-panorama, pan Ramajay, Junior Steelband Festivals and Pan is Beautiful competitions since 1992. 

            However, her principal contribution to the development of pan has been in the area of education.  From the inception of the music programme at the University of the West Indies (UWI), St. Augustine, in 1992, she has been its coordinator.  This involves teaching as well as developing and shaping courses of study leading to the Certificate in Music and the BA, Musical Arts.   The curriculum highlights the pan not only in Performance Studies but also in the academic areas of Music Education, Ethnomusicology and Musicology.   In collaboration with three UWI colleagues she has also been instrumental in the conceptualization, development and implementation  (1995) of Graded Examinations in Solo Steelpan Performance.   The purpose of these examinations in pan, the first of their kind anywhere in the world, is to give young pannists the same opportunity as those learning the piano or violin to have their progress systemically assessed in a non-competitive setting.  The syllabus is now in its fourth edition. 

            Dr. Osborne has also been involved at regional and national levels with the shaping of the CXC music examination in which the pan is a recognized musical instrument.  In the pilot stage of the examination she served as syllabus panel member, facilitator and chief examiner.   She is a founding, executive member of the Association of Caribbean Music Educators (ACME).

Golden Hands students have been sitting the Steelpan Examination since 1999.  Three of these students are currently students of the Musical Arts Special Degree at The University of The West Indies. 

Both the Director, Franka Hills-Headley and Assistant Director Dane Hinds are former students of the University of The West Indies Certificate In Music (pan) programme.


Mr. Bertrand Kelman, has recently received national honours for his contribution to the building, tuning and blending of steelpan instruments in Trinidad and Tobago.  He has worked with Dr. Brian Copland in developing the Genesis Pan.  Mr. Kelman has been the tuner for BP Renegades and has contributed to this band’s nine (9) Panorama championship wins.  He has also been the tuner for most of the finalists of Panorama for the past five (5) years.  These bands include Desperadoes, Phase II Pan Groove, Invaders, Starlift and many others.  Mr. Kelman, (the Maestro) a member of the first National Steel Orchestra, has travelled extensively both as a performer and a tuner, making his mark in countries such Japan, France , Saudi Arabia and Israel to name a few.  The exquisite craftsmanship of Bertrand Kelman has been recognized as one of his instruments has been taken aboard NASA's MARS expedition.  He is responsible for creating the Extended Seconds used by Vanessa Headley in The Rainmakers.  Mr. Kelman has been associated with Golden Hands since 1999.


Production Crew

Hazel Franco – Dance consultant

Carlyne Pereira – Artistic consultant

JoElla Moore (Golden Hands student) – Rainmaker Logo

Paulette Alfred – Costume consultant

Joanne Lewis – Costume Design and manufacture

Anikha Achee-(Golden Hands Student) - Costume Design

Jill Samson- Stage Manager

Ueline Joseph – Special Advisor


Marketing and Promotion

Wendy Jeremy

Marissa Brooks





Franka Hills-Headley:

Marissa Brooks

Centre For Creative and Festival Arts

Faculty of Humanities and Education

The University of The West Indies, St. Augustine


PBX: 1 (868) 662-2002 ext 3791

Tel/Fax: 1 (868) 663-2222




Submitted by Franka Hills-Headley

Contact me at 1 (868) 789-2279


NB:  Please contact Dr. Brian Copeland for further biographical details of Mr. Bertrand Kelman.



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