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Caribbean

Published on February 23rd, 2014 | by The Trinidad Guardian

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Panicle set to boost steelband – NGO to hold town hall meeting on March 7

Panicle Ltd, an NGO aimed at providing support systems for the steelbands of T&T and their membership, will host its George “Sonny” Goddard Inaugural Steelband Town Hall Meeting on March 7, from 1 pm, at the Starlift House of Music, Mucurapo Road Extension, Woodbrook. The event is free and open to the public. One of Goddard’s four sons, George Gerard, said on Wednesday: “The steel drum is one of the contributions that we, as the people of the Republic of T&T, have given to the rest of the world. This town hall meeting aims to address the reasons for that phenomenon.” Apart from George Gerard and his elder brother David George, Panicle also includes members of Hugh Borde’s family, with Emile Borde, his son, as one of its directors.

Hugh was the pioneer of Tripoli Steel Orchestra and was closely associated with Goddard when he served as president of the National Association of T&T Steelbandsmen (NATTS) and Pan Trinbago. The members of Panicle have sought to perpetuate the George Goddard legacy. George Gerard said: “In keeping with the Goddard legacy, we aim to begin an open debate on the issues affecting the local steelbands and their membership, and produce workable solutions to positively affect those issues. “This town hall meeting aims to catalyse the building of relationships, to listen to all sides of arguments and to be able to walk away with a feeling of unity and collective purpose.” He added: “This town hall meeting opens the opportunity for branding T&T as the home of our national instrument.”

The mission of Panicle is to establish the “Steelpan Blueprint for Success” as a model, on which ideas may be built, designed to advance the steelbands of T&T. George Gerard said: “We seek to work with all invested government and private sectors, including Pan Trinbago. “We hold no political alliance, and represent only the members of the steelbands of T&T, in a fully ‘non-profit’ capacity. “We are willing to work with any government administration, regardless of party, and will acknowledge those who work with us and show their commitment to the advancement of the steelbands.”

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