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Parang, pan and more in this hectic season

Friday, December 13, 2013
Champion parang band Los Alumnos de San Juan were part of the action at last Saturday’s WSJCA event at Adam Smith Square in Woodbrook.

The weekend past was another very hectic one with no fewer than ten events to attend.


On Saturday alone, there were the T&T Police Service concert at NAPA, Ray Holman’s concert at the Little Carib, Randy Glasgow’s Parang Food Festival in Arima, Silver Stars’ Parang & Steel, the Woodbrook/St James Community Association (WSJCA) Christmas concert at Adam Smith Square, and the annual Cheers street Christmas lime in St James.


Watching Marcia Miranda get at least two dozen children to join her in dance as she sang Tiefin’ Parang Band was priceless. And, to think there was no admission to last Saturday’s WSJCA event, held at Adam Smith Square in Woodbrook.


There was a huge turnout at the family event, with lots of parents giving their children a night out. Toy vendors made a brisk profit, as it seemed that almost every child wanted one of the lit balls or fans being hawked. On the downside however, the wrecking service was an unneeded and unwelcome nuisance. With vehicular traffic around the Square’s perimeter unimpeded and flowing freely the crews on two wreckers tried their best to wreck vehicles, supposedly parked within 30 metres from corners.


One other touching moment was when the girls of St Mary’s Mucurapo Girls’ RC School were accompanied by cuatrista Robert Munro. Munro is assisting the girls compose their songs, earmarked to be recorded next Christmas.


In an impromptu move, the girls also joined Munro and Ninja to dance when these established artistes performed.


Steelbands in the mix at Adam Smith Square were Petrotrin Phase II Pan Groove and White Oak Starlift. Also performing were Los Alumnos de San Juan, Krisson Joseph, Pentecostal Cathedral Youth Choir and Moulton Hall Methodist School Choir.


Newly elected Woodbrook councillor June Durham was also at the Adam Smith Square event.


Also on Saturday night, traffic was slowed to snail's pace along Mooneram Street, St James for the Cheers' Christmas event. With the delicacies of the season available, live music was provided by The Love Bunch paranderos, Sapophonics steelband and Unity tassa group.


Sunday's Christmas luncheon and awards ceremony, hosted by TT Carnival Bands Association (TTCBA) at The Lodge, Alexandra Street, St Clair, was a resounding success. A capacity filled hall was treated to a sumptious traditional Christmas lunch by Dune Ali and Rib House. Officiating were TTCBA president Jerry Weekes, Rosalind Gabriel, Arden Knox and Roland St George.


Among the recipients of awards for their numerous years of contributing to T&T Carnival were 91-year-old Carnival administrator Phyllis Mitchell, 93-year-old Dragon masquerader Dereck Morgan, Canute Spencer, Albert Bailey, Neville Aming, Lionel Jagessar, Miguel Marchand, Senior Gomez, CAL Invaders and White Oak Starlift.





Pan in the Christmas


A weekend is not complete without pan in its mix and Pan Trinbago brings down the curtain on its Pan in De Countryside series for yet another year in Santa Flora.


The event which had a successful run in far-flung districts of T&T will culminate at the Subnaik Park, Santa Flora, tomorrow, December 14, from 5 pm to 10 pm.


Pan in De Countryside as the name signifies is a concert-style event showcasing the music of the steelpan in places not normally exposed to such events.


The pan jamboree will include parang and soca parang in keeping with the Christmas season. Performers include NLCB Fonclaire, Fyzabad 4th Dimension, Diatonic Steel Orchestra, Curepe Polyphonics Steel Orchestra, San City Symphony, Ninja, with Sweetness Serenaders and DJ KC Klass is Class. Admission is free and patrons are invited to walk with their coolers.


As a special incentive, Pan Trinbago will be providing a shuttle service with a limited number of seats at $125 per person. The maxi taxi will depart Pan Trinbago’s Head Office, Park Street, Port-of-Spain at 2 pm. Interested people can call 625-3556.


Pan in de Countryside is a series of “open air” pan concerts designed to take steelband music to far flung villages and small towns where there is an absence of steelband and where there is little understanding of what pan can offer the community.


Similar events have been staged in Tableland, Biche, Speyside (Tobago), Tabaquite.


The December affair is supported by the Siparia Regional Corporation.


This evening Carib Woodbrook Playboyz continues its Pan & Parang after-work series on Fridays with performances by Scrunter and Carib Santa Rosa. The series culiminates next week Friday, December 20, with former National Calypso Monarch Denyse Plummer and Los Alumnos de San Juan, featuring queen of parang Alicia Jagessar. Keeping both evenings together musically is DJ Steve Sealy.


One of the most eagerly awaited musical events in Laventille takes place tomorrow, at 5.30 pm, at Our Lady of Fatima RC Church, Laventille Hill. It is the staging of the second annual The Hills Are Alive, hosted by Witco Desperadoes.


Not to be left out and keeping the national instrument alive at Christmas time is PCS Silver Stars. The orchestra is staging its 22nd edition of Parang & Steel tomorrow evening, from 8 pm, at its pan theatre on Tragarete Road, Newtown. Silver Stars’ guests are La Divina Pastora and Denyse Plummer. The former National Panorama champion ends its 2013 on December 21 with guests artistes Crazy and Fuego Caribueno.


More sweet steelband music is available tonight and through this weekend as Lydians Steel is sharing the spotlight at Queen’s Hall, at The Lydians 2013 Christmas A Season of Love Concert.


On Sunday evening, at 6 pm, Christmas in the Park is being held at Auzonville Park, Tunapuna. At this event, birdsong Academy Steel and birdsong Steel Orchestra will be joined by birdsong Academy Orch, Richie Quarless Orch, Raf Robertson & birdsong Small Ensemble, Los Paranderos de birdsong, John Thomas, Eastern Youth Chorale and more.




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