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Published on November 28th, 2015 | by Robbie Joseph


BAS celebrates its 20th Anniversary.

Formed in 1995, BAS is the only national organisation for steel bands in the UK, dedicated to the development of the art form through networking, information sharing, collaboration and training. It is a voluntary organisation whose day-today work is overseen and delivered by its elected Executives who are committed to raising the standards of playing and performance in steel pan.

BAS works in partnership with regional organisations and bands to lobby authorities and decision makers to value the significant contribution bands make to the communities in which they operate. Their sustained programmes of classes and workshops support programmes around community cohesion, citizenship, enterprise and are valuable interventions in engaging young people and developing their musical capacity. Internationally, we are supported by Pan Trinbago, the world governing body for steel pan, and we work closely with our counterparts in Europe, New York, Miami and the Caribbean to promote the instrument and the art form to its highest level.

Our joint work with the UK Pan Tuners Guild , a network of the country’s leading pan manufacturers and tuners and the only organisation of its kind anywhere in the world, continues and we jointly work with them to ensure the quality of the instrument is produced and maintained to international standards. Our future plans include encouraging young people into the profession to ensure the UK has the capacity to meet the demand for quality instruments.

In this difficult financial time we are all experiencing, we have noticed that funding and paid performances are in steady decline. To combat this BAS is working on strategies so that musicianship is sustained and best positioned for continued growth and success when the climate improves.

One of the many strategies we have implemented is the successful planning and capacity building program delivered through our Youth Engagement Sub Committee- a network of young people who are being supported and enabled to reach their potential as future leaders of the steel band community.  One event they organise is our annual Pan Explosion event, a showcase for new talent and the commissioning of new music.  Over the years we have been successful in rebranding the Pan Podium website and have made a conscience decision to redesign the layout of the magazine so it is in keeping with current professional media standards, another service from which the fraternity can benefit.

Membership to BAS is open to any steel band (subject to minimum requirements), solo pan player or individual with an interest in steel band music, art and culture, so please make contact so we can help you to push yourself and the art form to higher heights. Without you there is no us.

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