We are the music makers, and we are the dreamers of dreams. Guaico Presbyterian Primary School Steel Orchestra – Panpodium


Trinidad and Tobago

Published on July 28th, 2018 | by Robbie Joseph

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Guaico Presbyterian Primary School Steel Orchestra

We are the music makers, and we are the dreamers of dreams.

This orchestra has been exposed to the principles and practice of the steelpan during the period 2007-2017, when it students participated in various competitions and solo pan ensembles, under the direction of Mr Satnarine Bisookram, then Ms. Karisha Watson, and now Mrs Anna Noel.

In 2008, the “Pan in the Classroom Programme”, enabled the school to receive its first steelpans provided by the Ministry of Education. The primary goals of this programme were to implement the Ministry of Education’s music curricula in schools, utilizing the steelpan as the primary instrument; and facilitate all schools in Trinidad and Tobago in the acquisition of steelpan instruments and other accessories on a phased basis.

In 2010,  the first Junior Steelband was formed and it participated in the North Eastern Education District Music Festival, under the direction of Mr Satnarine Bisookram. They then qualified for the finals of the National Junior Steelband Festival where our students Shania Sookram (Solo Class), coupled with Talia Lockhart and Cassandra Ali (Duet Class) competed creditably.

During the period 2011-2012, the Junior Steelband had been a regular part of various in-house activities, community events, and competitions, under the direction of Ms. Karisha Watson.

In 2012, Mrs Anna Noel joined and eventually replaced, Ms. Karisha Watson, and the Junior Steelband was upgraded to a Steel Orchestra, with the assistance of a Steelpan arranger/tuner, Mr. Kayle Noel.

In 2014, the Steel orchestra participated in the preliminaries of the National Junior Steelband Panorama competition for the first time, under the direction of Mrs Anna Noel. The tune played was “Epic” (sung by calypsonian, Machel Montano), and it was arranged by Mr Kayle Noel.

In addition to the “Pan in the Classroom Unit”, the Steel Orchestra has received tremendous support from its parent steelband, the “Sangre Grande Cordettes”, which assisted in providing a venue for rehearsals and staging the Steel Orchestra’s performance during the preliminary competition, and assisting with playing equipment.

In 2015 on its 2nd attempt at the National Junior Steelband Panorama competition, the Steel Orchestra qualified for the National Finals, where they were awarded 5th position, under the direction of Mrs Anna Noel – having also won the North-east zonal title. The tune played was “Phenomenal” (sung by calypsonian, Benjai), and it also was arranged by Mr Kayle Noel.

In 2016 on its 3rd attempt at the National Junior Steelband Panorama competition, the Steel Orchestra qualified for the National Finals, where they were awarded 9th position, under the direction of Mrs Anna Noel. The tune played was “Place in Life” (sung by calypsonian, Blaxx), and it was again arranged by Mr Kayle Noel.

In 2017 on its 4th attempt at the National Junior Steelband Panorama competition, the Steel Orchestra qualified for the National Finals, where they were awarded 6th position, under the direction of Mrs Anna Noel – they also won their 2nd North-east zonal title. The tune played was “Full Extreme” (sung by calypsonian, Ultimate Rejects), and it was again arranged by Mr Kayle Noel.

The Steel Orchestra was then honoured for its achievements by being bestowed the Sangre Grande Regional Corporation (SGRC) award, and was later celebrated by being requested to perform for the World Calypso Icon, Ms Linda McCartha Lewis (Calypso Rose), when she was herself honoured by the SGRC.

The Guaico Presbyterian primary school Steel Orchestra is privileged to be managed by a team of capable leaders, including its Principal (Mrs Indira Rambaran-Mohammed), Vice-principal (Ms Theresa Motilal), Music Teacher (Mrs Anna Noel), Arranger/Steelpan tuner (Mr Kayle Noel), Captain (Sydney Nichols) and Vice Captain (Nikeisha Daniel).

By Guaico Tamana Management Team


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