Steelpan Pioneers honoured with Awards in High Wycombe

18th November 2015 – FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE

Press Release

Steelpan Pioneers honoured with Awards in High Wycombe

On Saturday 14th November SV2G hosted an evening of excellence at the Holiday Inn, an exclusive number of pioneering Steelpan Musicians from High Wycombe, who played in the 1950’s, 1960’s and 1970’s were given recognition for their contribution of the development of steelpans and it’s legacy left in High Wycombe.  . This historic occasion was marked with a presentation by the High Commissioner for St. Vincent & the Grenadines, His Excellency Cenio Lewis CMG, with special appearance from Gerald Forsythe OBE, surprising guests with an exclusive performance.  Forsythe was instrumental in establishing steelpans in UK schools during the 1970’s.  He is also an accomplished Pianist, Arranger and Tuner. Throughout the evening guests were entertained by members of the School of Steelpans and Wycombe Steel Orchestra.  Members of Wycombe Steel Orchestra also performed in the Lord Mayor’s annual Parade that morning of 14th November 2015.  After participating in the parade, Wycombe Steel Orchestra was rushed back to High Wycombe to perform and celebrate their 10th Anniversary.

The event is part of SV2G’s project “A Steelpan Town”, in which £48,000.00 has been funded by the Heritage Lottery Fund with support from Wycombe Museum together with Wycombe District Council . The Project will explore the rich diverse history of steelpan music, the musicians and the instrument itself.  High Wycombe has a rich history of steelpan music from the Caribbean with many local steelbands producing accomplished steelpan musicians. Vincentians from High Wycombe formed many steelbands including the New Sound Crusaders Steelband which became famous when in 1971 they won the National TV programme ‘Opportunity Knocks’ for six consecutive weeks.  A modern day equivalent programme of Opportunity Knocks would be Britain’s Got Talent. Stories from many more successful bands and musicians will be documented as part of this exciting project.


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