New York, USA - Genesis Pan Groove of New York has been seeking to be the latest steel orchestra to become Panorama champions in the annual event which takes place the Saturday night before Labor Day in New York. This year, that is August 31, 2019. The band has been practicing at its Brooklyn pan yard since the beginning of the month. Trouble In The Morning is Genesis’ tune of choice, but for now, it’s trouble even perhaps getting on stage to compete, despite all their hard work.
Event organizers W.I.A.D.C.A. (West Indian American Day Carnival Association) have repeatedly blocked Genesis musical director and arranger Sadé Constantine in the band’s attempts to participate in the event, going so far as to even turn up unannounced and in a hostile manner at the band’s pan yard during rehearsals to conduct an unprecedented ‘head count’ - this, almost two weeks before the competition. The minimum number of musicians - on stage - W.I.A.D.C.A. is insisting on this year, is fifty.
For the record, head counts, even when and IF conducted, are done when the band is on stage, ready to perform at the competition. The result/number counted in the afore-mentioned pan yard ‘visit’ was used by W.I.A.D.C.A. as “justification,” when they then prevented Genesis from drawing a number on Thursday August 22, to participate in the competition, which would have determined the position in which the orchestra would have competed with their musical peers.
Genesis Pan Groove has since garnered support of the steelband fraternity, as well as the management of other steel orchestras, reflected in a signed petition, where to date, as at the time writing (the afternoon of August 23) - four of Genesis’ would-be fellow competitors—CASYM, Pan Evolution, ADLIB and Despers USA—have gone on record with their respective signatures. Other bands are reportedly also sympathetic and may offer formal support as well. For now, Genesis is continuing to protest its forced exclusion from the 2019 New York Panorama by W.I.A.D.C.A.
Petition signed by fellow competitors (steel orchestras) on behalf of Genesis Pan Groove - re: 2019 New York Panorama
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