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Exodus captures World Festival title
Posted By: News
Date: Monday, 21 October 2002, at 7:29 a.m.
By Sean Nero, Newsday TT
A SPIRITED PERFORMANCE of Peter Tchaikovsky's "Romeo and Juliet," catapulted Tunapuna-based Exodus Steel Orchestra into winners' row at Saturday night's final of the second biennial World Steelband Music Festival at the Jean Pierre Complex, Wrightson Road, Port-of-Spain.
Appearing in position number four, around 8.50 pm, Exodus under the direction of Venezuelan Jesus Acosta scored 564 points to edge out defending champion TCL Group Skiffle Bunch Steel Orchestra by a mere three points into second place with 561 points.
Following the performances, the panel of adjudicators comprising chief judge Larry Snider of the United States, Joslynne Sealey and Merle Albino De Coteau with Clive "Zanda" Alexander as an alternate, adjudged that the top two steel orchestras were tied with a score of 284 points for the presentations of their tune-of-choice.
As done in 2000 when it won the festival, San Fernando-based Skiffle Bunch commissioned ace arranger Len "Boogsie" Sharpe to do its tune-of-choice titled "Ocean Rhapsody," in which he played a vital role executing riveting solo passages to an already scintillating presentation.
However, in the test piece category playing the song "Pan Talent" composed and sung by the Mighty Terror (Fitzgerald Henry) Exodus bettered Skiffle Bunch by three marks, gathering 280 points. Pelham Goddard, resident arranger for Exodus was responsible for the band's test piece.
Ebony Steel Orchestra from London, England, believed to be the more formidable of the two international finallists — the other being Courts New Dimension of Grenada — was nestled into the third spot; and again just the way three points separated the first and second bands, it did the second and third place contestants.
The UK steelband earned 558 points for its interpretation of George Gershwin "An American In Paris," arranged and conducted by Yaira Yonne of Switzerland. For this selection Ebony gathered 278 points, while it tied for the test piece with Exodus with 280 amassing points. Trinidadian Anise "Haffers" Hadeed did the test piece.
The night's musical showcase got off to a particularly good start with the performance of the Trinidad and Tobago Defence Force Steel Orchestra, before a small crowd at the beginning of the programme, that built to an appreciative number as the festival progressed.
Defence Force also played a selection penned by Tchaikovsky entitled "The 4th Movement, 5th Symphony," conducted by Deryck Nurse, placing fourth with 534 marks, while the youthful aggregation of Gary Straker's Pan School delivered a convincing enough performance to secure fifth place. Under the direction of Renrick Lewis Gary Straker's Pan School earned 525 points to lead Courts New Dimension of Grenada by one point.
New Dimension, the lone Caribbean band in the final offered its rendition of a tune called "Appreciation for Pan" composed and arranged by David "Peck" Edwards.
Another band going the way of playing an own composition was Petrotrin Trinmar SBU Hatters, which played "The Attack and Aftermath of September 11, 2001," composed and arranged by American Dr Jeanine Remy. The southern band got 521 points.
Solo Pan Knights playing John Williams' "The Throne Room and End Title," to the movie "Star Wars," could not replicate the fortune it had in 1998 when the band placed third with the song at Pan Trinbago's "Pan Is Beautiful VIII — Steelband Music Festival." On Saturday night, Pan Knights closed the World Steelband Music Festival playing in position number eight and held on to that spot when the results were announced on Sunday morning. The festival in tribute to veteran calypsonian the Mighty Terror saw him honoured by Pan Trinbago who conceptualised the programme that was managed by an organising committee. But his moment of glory did not take place at the start of the programme as listed because the organiser could not find him.
When he was located later in the programme he was disturbed that the organiser did not make transportation arrangements for him to get to the venue, causing him to find his way on his own.
How they placed:
1. Exodus Trinidad 564
2. TCL Group Skiffle Bunch Trinidad 561
3. BWIA Ebony London 558
4. TT Defence Force Trinidad 534
5. Gary Straker's Pan School Trinidad 525
6. Courts New Dimension Grenada 524
7. Petrotrin Trinmar SBU Hatters Trinidad 521
8. Solo Pan Knights Trinidad 513
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