Trinidad and Tobago

Published on July 28th, 2018 | by Robbie Joseph

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Tobago Pan-Thers Steel Orchestra – Creating Leaders Through Music

Nestled in the lush green vegetation of the North coast of Tobago, Tobago Pan-Thers steelOrchestra (Traditional Pan round the Neck) was founded in 1992 by Mr. Milton Thomas in the small village of Golden Lane. Back then the band was known as G.M.C (Golden Lane, Mt. Thomas and Culloden) Steel orchestra.

It was formed for the sole purpose of keeping his children off the street and avoid getting involved in the social ills at the time. The band started playing in community activities and the hotels in Tobago and the membership grew outside of the family with more people from their village and neighboring ones got involved.

In 1997, the band went through a name change to Tobago Pan-Thers in keeping with the competitive market. That attracted interest in the band that allowed our membership to grow and allowed us to enter into the 1998 panorama competition for the first time placing fourth (4TH) in the Tobago zonal finals.

In 2000, the band started to reap its fruits of labor by placing second (2nd) in the Tobago zonal final and first in the THA Pan Champs earning them a place on the Pan Trinbago’s Champs in Concert event. In 2002, they rose again to stardom placing first (1st) in both the Tobago zonal and THA Pan Champs and qualified for the national semi finals in Trinidad. In 2003, they placed first (1st) in Tobago zonal and THA pan champs and qualified for the national semi finals in Trinidad. Completing a hattrick.

  • In 2004, they placed first (1st) in the Tobago zonal finals and THA pan champs and qualified for the national semi finals in Trinidad.
  • In 2005, they placed second (2nd) in the Tobago zonal and third (3rd) in the THA pan champs and also qualified for the national semi finals in Trinidad.
  • In 2006, they placed fourth (4th) in the Tobago zonal and third (3rd) in the THA pan champs.
  • In 2007, they placed second (2nd) in the Tobago zonal and third (3rd) in the THA pan champs and also qualified for the national semi finals in Trinidad.
  • In 2008, they placed first (1st) in the Tobago zonal and first (1st) in the THA pan champs and also qualified for the national semi finals in Trinidad.
  • In 2009, they placed first (1st) in the Tobago zonal and sixth (6th) in the THA pan champs and also qualified for the national semi finals.
  • In 2010, they placed first (1st) in the Tobago zonal and third (3rd) in the THA pan champs and also qualified for the national semi finals.

2011 was the transition year for Tobago Pan-Thers. The band graduated to the Conventional Small Category previously being in the Single Pan Band.

In 2012, was the new beginning of Tobago Pan-Thers and also created history by being the first single pan band from Tobago to make such a huge step by graduating in categories. This was a noble feat that was recognized and applauded by all in the Pan world including the regional and central executives of Pan Trinbago.

  • In 2012, they placed first (1st) in the THA pan champs and also qualified for the national semi finals. (Conventional small)
  • In 2013, they placed first (1st) in the THA pan champs and also qualified for the national semifinals. (Conventional small)
  • In 2014, they placed first (1st) in the THA pan champs and also qualified for the national semifinals. (Conventional small)

Completing yet another hattrick for THA Pan Champs Competition.

  • In 2015, placed third (3rd) in the THA pan champs and also qualified for the national semifinals. (Conventional small)
  • In 2016, placed fourth (4th) in the THA pan champs and also qualified for the national semifinals. (Conventional small)

Tobago Pan-Thers continue to participate in all Steel band related events and is heavily involved in its youth program, which was the band’s original intentions.

 Their manager is Brian Thomas with Ryan Mckeller as their captain. Melissa Thomas-Williams holds the post of vice captain whilst Ion-Iee Farmer is their administrative head.  Imlah Taylor is their appointed PRO with Francesca Thomas holding the post Trustee. They can be contacted by email- tobagopanthers@gmail.com


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