Review by Kevin Baldeosingh
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Providence/QRC Junior Pan champs
It was a tough decision for the judges in the 2014 National Schools Panorama Finals at the Queen’s Park Savannah, yesterday. Bands in all categories played their hearts out to get the judges’ nod. However, there were the exceptional few.
St Paul’s Anglican School scored 264 points, beating 11 other schools in the primary schools category. Their selection was Soca Baptist sung by Austin “SuperBlue” Lyons and it was their first time in the competition. Principal Marlene White said she knew the school would do well as the students practised very hard, but admitted winning was an unexpected shock. “We are elated…lost for words but definitely happy,” she said.
St Mary’s Government Primary took second place with 257 points playing Magic Drum, composed by Len “Boogsie” Sharpe, arranged by Aquill Arrindel and sung by Machel Montano. Defending champions, St Margaret Boys RC, who previously won the title nine times, had to settle for third place, scoring 256 points with Differentology by Ian “Bunji Garlin” Alvarez.
The excitement continued in the secondary schools category with high-quality performances from the Providence Girl/QRC steelband, Bishops Anstey East/Trinity East and Symphony Saints, a combined effort of St Joseph Convent Port-of-Spain and St Mary’s College and St Francois Girls College, the only all-female band to have won the competition three times previously. Providence/QRC won with 266 points and members celebrated by shouting “We beat Francois.” They played Pan In Danger by the late Merchant.
In second place was St Charles High School with Champions, composed by Carlon “Chucky” Harewood, while Symphony of Saints placed third with Trini by Rodney “Benji” Le Blanc.
In the non-school category BP Renegades won with Happiest Man Alive by Machel Montano, scoring 277 points. Invaders Youth Steel Orchestra were second with a 267 points playing Flag Party by Austin “Super Blue” Lyons. And St Margaret’s Boys Steel Orchestra took third position with a score of 262 points with their selection More Love, by Len “Boogsie” Sharpe.
This year’s competition was in honour of Salmon Cupid and the late Ian “Teddy” Belgrave. Cupid is the inventor of the E-pan, the world’s first electronic synthesised steel pan. Belgrave was instrumental in forming the Pan in Schools Co-ordinating Council (PSCC) in 1999. Minister of Arts and Multiculturalism Dr Lincoln Douglas said each year the competition proves that the nation’s national instrument is in good hands. He said the ministry would consider financial incentives to encourage young arrangers.
Three days ago, the minister said the same would be done for any young person who designs and makes their own costume for kiddies carnival.
Junior pan Results
1. St Paul’s Anglican School- Soca Baptist- 264 points
2. St Mary’s Government Primary- Magic Drum- 257
3. St Margaret’s Boys RC- Differentology- 256
4. Febeau Government Primary- Play The Music- 248
5. Malabar RC Steel Orchestra- Spankin- 246
6. Fifth Company Baptist Rising Stars- The Hammer- 241
7. Presbyterian 2 All Stars- Curry Tabanca- 236
8. Point-Fortin Anglican- Play More Local- 235
9. Nelson Street Boys- Free Up- 230
10. Princes Town Methodist- Nah Leaving- 224
11. Diego Martin Boys RC- Play The Music- 222
12. Couva Anglican School- Symphony In G -221
1. Providence/QRC- Pan In Danger- 266
2. St Charles High School- Champions- 265
3. Symphony of Saints- Trini- 264
4. St Francois Girls High School- Big in the Dance- 259
5. Bishop Anstey High & Trinity East- Take Me With You- 258
6. Mt Hope Secondary- Fire Down Below- 246
7. Bon Air Beacons- Let Go- 237
8. Speyside High School- Toco Band- 236
9. Goodwill Industries- Carnival Tabanca- 234
10. St Madeleine Secondary- Iron Man- 229
1. BP Renegades- Happiest Man Alive- 277
2. Invaders Youth Steel Orchestra- 267
3. St Margaret’s Boys Steel Orchestra- More Love- 262
4. Tropical Angel Harps- Happiest Man Alive
Revelation Institute for Performing Education- 261
6. Success Stars Pan Sounds- Carnival Nostalgia- 253
7. Trinity All Generation Steel- Pan is Carnival- 245
8. St Benedicts Steel- Fire Coming Down- 229