Social Cohesion Ministry donates Steel Pans to UG

In this DPI photo from left are Professor Paloma Mohamed; Minister of Social Cohesion, Dr. George Norton; Professor Emeritus Joycelynne Loncke; Vice-Chancellor of the University of Guyana, Ivelaw Griffith; Director of National School of Music, Andrew Tyndall.

The Ministry of Social Cohesion on Monday donated a ten-piece steel pan ensemble comprising of the bases, guitar pans and frontliner pans to the University of Guyana (UG).

The presentation ceremony was held at the minister’s office on Main Street and was attended by faculty members of the university, according to the Department of Public Information (DPI).

Delivering brief remarks, Professor Emeritus, Dr. Joycelynne Loncke said that this donation is “a fulfilment of a dream that goes back some thirty years.” She said that when the university’s music programme was launched in 1994, it was the department’s desire “to train pan-men so that they can become qualified musicians, music teachers and so on.”

She thanked the Ministry of Social Cohesion and National School of Music Director, Andrew Tyndall, for the donation.

Vice-Chancellor of the University of Guyana, Professor Ivelaw Griffith said that the donation sets the stage for the “rejuvenation of music as a point of pride and as a point of cultural enhancement.”

Professor Griffith revealed that with the university placing emphasis on the Arts and this donation, the university made the decision to have Camo Williams, a renowned pannist, be their next Artist in Residence.  The instruments donated were a part of the National Steel Orchestra ensemble which performed at the 2008 Carifesta celebrations but has since downsized, DPI said.

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