Trinidad and Tobago’s National Instrument Undeserving of Carifesta Main Stage?
The Carifesta XIV experience being hosted in Trinidad and Tobago this year may have a bit of upheaval, this as Pantrinbago says the national instrument isn’t being treated with the respect it deserves.
Ace pannist Dane Gulston has spoken out on the matter of the steelpan not being included in the main concert event, “Island Beats”, which is carded for August 24th.
The Isand Beats event being hosted at the Queen’s Park Savannah, will be headlined by Machel Montano, Grammy Award winner, Shaggy and Guadeloupe’s Kassav, with other performances by young entertainers like Nailah Blackman and Voice. Gulston argues it’s outrageous that no thought was given to including the host country’s national instrument in the main stage lineup, further stating that the use of steel pan only at the opening and closing of events, is essentially a slap in the face.
Speaking on television on Friday morning, Pantrinbago President, Beverly Ramsey-Moore said while the organization, under her stewardship, has enjoyed a very good relationship with Culture and Arts Minister Nyan Gadsby Dolly, her response to the request from Pantrinbago to be included in the main stage dynamic, was unappreciated. She relayed how Gadsby Dolly seemed to have been taken aback by the request, in essence squealing, “Pan on stage with Machel and Shaggy?!”
The Minister is yet to comment on the issue, this as social media is now abuzz with online commentators arguing that Trinidad and Tobago’s renowned national instrument- the only major musical instrument invented in the 20th century, should be loved by its people and shared with the world, at any opportunity given.
In May this year, Jamaican reggae sensation Tarrus Riley was greeted by Gulston to the sound of the steelpan, which he enjoyed tremendously.