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The British Association of Steelbands 12th Annual Awards

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Dudley Dickerson and Pepe Francis Dudley Dickson - 2010 Hall of Fame Lifetime Achievement Award presented by Pepe Francis - BAS

United Kingdom - The BAS (British Association of Steelbands) Awards Dinner event celebrated its 12th year in existence on Saturday 4th December 2010, since its initiation in 1999 in the humble surroundings of the Tabernacle which now houses the refurbished Carnival Village.  The event continues to develop in leaps and bounds setting the standards for similar events organized by the other UK Carnival arenas.

The Association celebrated their annual awards ceremony at the Holiday Inn in Bloomsbury, London which was established to celebrate the successes of bands and individuals and, in recognising excellence, to honour the wider and more sustained contributions of individuals, groups and organisations to the promotion of steel pan music, culture and heritage throughout the United Kingdom. The Association congratulates all recipients on their outstanding achievements. In celebrating achievements BAS are raising the profile of carnival arts.

It is a fact that BAS is the UK’s only carnival arts-based organisation whose membership and network extends throughout the UK. On the night of the Awards Dinner event they had members and representatives not only from London and the Home Counties but also from Bath, Birmingham, High Wycombe, Leicester, Newcastle, Reading and Plymouth.  

Distinguished guests included Samenua Sesher – Head of Culture at Royal Borough of Kensington and Chelsea;  Rudolph Walker – Actor; Frank Rollock - member of the BAS Hall of Fame; Toussaint Clarke; Dudley Dickson; Aubrey Bryan; Robbie Joseph; Grafton Yearwood and Cordelia Johnney of the UK Pan Tuners Guild; Tony Isles - Chair of the UK Carnival Arts Centre; Angela Thompson, Ricky Belgrave and Lyndon Lacrette – Chairs of the Notting Hill Carnival Arts Arena and; Shabaka Thompson – CEO of Carnival Village.

Reading All Steel Percussion Orchestra with award Reading All Steel Percussion Orchestra (RASPO) with Randolph Baptiste Inspirational Award 2010, presented by Tara Baptiste

Pepe Francis, Chair of BAS noted in his speech the effect that the current economic climate is having on the steelband community, highlighting the support and involvement needed from everyone involved in the art form to ensure its continuity particularly as the Association’s funding is to be reduced by 33% over the following three years.  

Struggle is nothing new to the steelband fraternity but as a unified body they can use that strength to overcome current and future barriers and ensure that the steelband music continues to grow stronger on the global music platform.   

Master of Ceremonies on the night was Martin Jay of Choice FM 96.9 who has officiated at this event for a number of years. After having the truly delicious West Indian cuisine and witnessing the Awards, Rudolph Walker gave a nostalgic speech highlighting the journey of Pepe’s life who was celebrating his 30th anniversary of being at the helm of the steelband movement in the UK, which was inundated with amusing wittiness. Kayleigh ‘Loudmouth’ Lewis, the live act of the evening, filled the hall with laughter from her overwhelming humour with Pepe being her subject matter. She had everyone in stitches with her ten-minute delivery. Samenua Sesher also presented Pepe with a ‘Book of his Life.’ Patrons were treated to some lively and captivating  music by DJ, Mike Forbes who had them dancing until the wee hours of the morning. Everyone is now looking forward to next year’s event with great enthusiasm.  Visit the Pan Podium photo Gallery to view all the photos of the BAS 2010 Awards ceremony.

BAS Awards BAS Awards

British Association of Steelbands 2010 Awards
British Association of Steelbands 2010 Awards

BAS continues to work with all interested commercial entities to encourage investment in steelbands highlighting the many and varied benefits of – social and community cohesion, regeneration, education, preventative and diversionary engagement strategies, employment opportunities as well as brand awareness and promotion, marketing.  

The British Association of Steelbands extends their thanks for everyone’s support of their 12th Annual Awards Presentation.

From the news desk of Pan Podium
story by Robbie Joseph
All photos by Robbie Joseph

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