Musician from Success Stars Pan Sounds (left), receives winning trophy
Global - Success Stars Pan Sounds, St. Francois Girls’ Steel Orchestra and St. Margaret’s Boys all repeated as Trinidad & Tobago Junior National Panorama champions in the Non-school, Secondary school and Primary school categories, respectively, retaining titles won in 2012. These three bands bested their fellow competitors following more than ten hours of steelpan music in a roster which featured at least three dozen steel orchestras.
Continuing in their tradition of going to competition performing an original composition was a formula that worked once again for Success Stars – captained by Louis Rogers – out of Laventille when they clinched the Non-schools title playing “Something to Celebrate.” The tune turned out ‘gold’ for the orchestra, giving them three consecutive titles; they did have ‘something to celebrate’ - the championship at the end of the musical contest. The song was written, sung and arranged by the band’s resident and much-loved twenty-one-year-old arranger, Mickiel Gabriel. “The students of Success Laventille Secondary and the community - the people from the community, because we are not just based in school, we are a school and community-based band, we really, really worked hard,” says Mickiel proudly. “We try to do our Panorama music with a difference. We don’t follow the typical, the ‘everyday’ Panorama song. I try to embody whatever the song is; this was ‘something to celebrate’ - I tried to embody everything that is Trinidad & Tobago - our culture, our people, our Olympians, the way we talk....the way we communicate, everything....”
Patriotically attired in Trinidad & Tobago’s national colors of red, white and black, Renegades Youth Steel Orchestra was runner-up in the non-school category, playing “Gold - Remix.” Returning for the second year with the band was arranger Sheldon Peters who appeared very pleased to further solidify the relationship entered into with the players in 2012. Peters explained in part “The main thing in this whole competition, is that I want the kids to enjoy themselves; that’s the most important thing for me. You could do what[ever] type of music...and they’re dancing and they’re enjoying themselves to that - I’m doing that music for them.”
When Steel Talks extends congratulations to all the participants. You were awesome.
The event was truly a celebration of youth, culture and tradition. Moreover, it was a serious investment in youth development and the future. For many of the performing youngsters, these are experiences which will shape their lives positively forever and will provide lasting bonds and memories.
The prize structure was identical across the three categories. Winning steel orchestras each received TT $35,000.00, runners-up - TT $33,000.00, those placing third - TT $31,000.00 and fourth place garnered TT $29,000.00. Trinidad & Tobago’s 2013 Junior National Panorama was dedicated to composer/arranger Duvone Stewart and composer, arranger, conductor, educator and musician Maureen Clement.
Victor Prescod, Cuthbert Matthew, Dr. Roger Henry, Malcolm Boyce, Maureen Clement and Terrance Sealey were the judges in the Primary school category. The Secondary school steel orchestra judges were Michelle Dowrich, Damien Phillip, Bernadette Roberts, Derek Boucaud, Jill-Ann Walter and Kenrick Noel. Deciding the outcome in the Non-school category were judges Marcelline Peters, Arddin Herbert, Kevin McLeod, Sherry-Ann Saunders, Jeanette Johnson and Seion Gomez. Criteria that were considered in the performances included arrangement, introduction and conclusion, re-harmonization, motivic development, melodic development, and general performance.
Big-Up to Vibe CT 105.1 FM for carrying a significant part of the 2013 National Junior Panorama, enabling those not in Trinidad & Tobago to experience clear and enjoyable audio of the youngsters’ performances. Not only did they carry the event, their on-air personnel presented with an attitude and attention to detail rarely provided to performing steel orchestras in general. Due to other commitments the station ended its broadcast shortly after the final category – that of Non-schools – took the stage. TV 4 also provided local coverage of the entire affair from just after 9:00 a.m. This year’s broadcasts of the nation’s youth as they reveled in showing off their skills on the country’s national instrument, the Steelpan, were very welcome - in sharp contrast to the utter lack of coverage in 2011.
Following are the results, listing participating steel orchestras and their scores.
The National Junior Panorama was sponsored in part by Petrotrin and The Ministry of Education.
* click for 2012 Junior National Panorama Results
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