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  July 21, 2005  

Smouldering North Stars Steel Orchestra
Dennis Rollins
hit Regents Park Band Stand

by Robbie Joseph



North Stars Molten tour at Regent's Park  - photos by R. Joseph

United Kingdom - Visitors to Regents Park, London were certainly treated to a generous helping of Pan/Jazz music on Sunday the 17th July 2005 supplied by North Stars Steel Orchestra, the acclaimed trombonist, Dennis Rollins and the young and aspiring pan musician Samuel Dubois. North Stars’ ‘Molten Metal’ tour of the UK is turning out to be yet another one of their great achievements. They had the crowds dancing, young and old jamming to the sweet sounds of steel and trombone. The ‘concert’ was blessed with great summer conditions with the crowds basking in the 29 º temperatures.

North Stars Steel Orchestra is one of Europe’s oldest and best-established steel bands. Founded in Huddersfield in 1975, North Stars set out to reveal to the British people the true spirit, virtuosity and power of the authentic steel pan art form as it is in Trinidad. Over the last 30 years, the orchestra has constantly striven to expand the scope and scale of both the music and its audience through performance, education, competition and collaboration. During that time North Stars have performed throughout the UK as well as in Germany, France and the Caribbean. Highlights include performing at Buckingham Palace for the Queen’s Jubilee Festival, at the Old Vic for the 100th birthday celebrations of the Labour Party, at the Royal Festival Hall and Shakespeare’s Globe, and live on BBC’s Blue Peter. In 2002 they were crowned British Champions of Steel at the National Steelband Panorama.

Acclaimed musician, composer and educator, Dennis Rollins is well-known on the British and international jazz scene and is celebrated for his professionalism, versatility and unique approach to the underrated trombone. Recently hailed by Jazzwise as ‘the most exciting British trombonist in decades’, Dennis is inspiring a new generation of musicians and audiences – demonstrating how the underrated trombone can be an exciting front-line instrument.

Samuel Dubois is the British Association of Steelbands (BAS) 2004 Pan Explosion champion soloist and was also responsible for the musical arrangements for Ebony MV ensemble. He has been a member of Ebony Steel Orchestra for many years and has played with the London Philharmonic Orchestra and Billy Ocean and for movie stars Bill Murray and Pierce Brosnan. He teaches the steel pan art form in over twenty schools and is also a new force in the UK as a composer and virtuoso soloist.

The combination of a jazz/funk trombonist with a full steel orchestra has never been done before so patrons to their concerts will have to get ready for a mind-bending meeting of metal and musical styles.

Robbie Joseph

Europe Correspondent

All photos by Robbie Joseph
©2005 PanPodium

Sunday, 17 July, 3.15pm
Royal Parks Summer Programme, Regent's Park Bandstand, London

Saturday, 23 July, 4.00pm
Harbourside Festival, Bristol

Saturday, 13 August, 6.30pm
Brecon Jazz Festival, Wales

Sunday, 14 August
World Music Day, Shrewsbury

Saturday, 10 September
Brewery Arts Centre, Kendal, Cumbria

Saturday, 8 October
Marsden Jazz Festival, West Yorkshire

Saturday, 15 October
The Playhouse, Norwich

Sunday, 23 October
Musicport 2005 Festival, Whitby, North Yorkshire

Saturday, 12 November
Sallis Benny Theatre, Brighton

More information at


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