from the BankBoston Celebrity Series
Panazz is the leading small band ensemble in Trinidad and Tobago, the islands which gave birth to the
steelband. Led by their arranger, Barry Bartholomew, this exciting band has captivated audiences with their musicianship and flair for spontaneity
There is a tremendous rapport among the players, whose technique and dynamics
are absolutely superb. Indeed, solo performances by all the players betray a
musicianship which reflects the talent of some of the best players in the land.
Four-time winners of the prestigious Pan Ramajay competition for small bands in
Trinidad and Tobago (the first time playing as Potential Symphony), Panazz is a
title derived for Pan and jazz, and expresses the musical interest of these
young musicians who have a flair, not only for the indigenous calypso music of
the island, but especially for the jazz idiom.
Panazz has most recently participated in the BankBoston Celebrity Series at
Symphony Hall in March 1997 as the opening act, and as the headliner in November
1998. Prior to this, Panazz performed
for the United Nations in Japan in November 1996. Other performances include
World Travel Market Exposition at Earl's Court, London in November 1995; the
Africa in April celebrations, Memphis, TN in April 1996; and Pigeon Island, St.
Lucia for the 1996 Jazz Festival. The band performs continually for several
corporate organizations and other gala events.
Their first album, entitled Steel Pan Music, is pan at its very best, from
the jazzy rendition of Bizet's semi-classical Carmen to a Latin version of
Aldwyn Roberts' calypso Iron Man, as interpreted by Ramsey Lewis and Raf
Robertson respectively, two of the band's favorite musical artists.
The second CD, newly released, is entitled Panazz Live, and was recorded at
the band's annual concert in Trinidad at Central Bank Auditorium. It captures the spontaneity of a live performance
interaction. Panazz performed for TIDCO at MIDEM in Miami in September 1997,
where for the first time MIDEM showcased Caribbean and Latin American music.
From this performance, Panazz secured a contract and performed at Epcot Center
in Disney World. The band has been described by the Barbados Advocate as "a
veritable potpourri of musical gems."