Members of the Steelfestt Organising Committee, Officers of the Central Executive and staff of Pan Trinbago, members of the steelband fraternity, specially invited guests, ladies and gentlemen.
On behalf of Pan Trinbago Inc., the officers and members, I take this opportunity to express sincere words of welcome.
We take great pleasure in asking you to give praise to the members of the Steelfestt Committee, which is chaired by Ms. Maureen Manchouk, whose love for the Pan and its music is overtaken only by her admiration for the steelband performers.
Permit me to let you know, that Maureen is valued to an extremely high degree by the association.
The members of this committee have all demonstrated a very keen interest in the development of the Pan and the performers.
It would be remiss of me were I to allow to pass this opportunity where I congratulate Dave Dedier for the concept, which gave birth to Steelfestt.
I am sure, very sure – ladies and gentlemen, that you have heard ad nauseum, how the Pan has gone to so many parts of the world and how Trinidad and Tobago was losing out on the commercialization of this great instrument.
Ladies and gentlemen, I am not too sure that very many people – locals I mean, really appreciate what the Pan means to the country, how useful the Pan is as a medium for teaching music.
Regrettably we had the very unfortunate development within our education system where the Pan was removed from its position of eminence and tossed down into the category of being just another instrument.
Tonight I stand before you to offer praise to the Pan, which was researched and developed by men whose only skill was that driven by a determination to produce an instrument out of discarded vessels and containers. Who was Victor Totee Wilson? - The man credited with putting the first notes on a metal container. He was a simple pan man who felt the spiritual urgings of an inspiration that was dynamic and far-reaching.
I feel compelled to share with you, our hurt and disappointment caused by the cavalier attitude towards this instrument, which has been demonstrated by those in authority.
The Pan is ours and we are proud to be steelband members.
We are also proud to be manufacturers of this indigenous National Musical Instrument – the Steelpan, which we intend to sell to the world market via our company – Trinidad and Tobago Pan Instruments Limited.
Long live the Pan!
Pan Trinbago at this time hosts musicians from Brazil, India, Cuba and China.
We say welcome. Come share with us. Our aim is to make you comfortable and may your stay be both enjoyable and information filled.