Former president of Pan Trinbago managing director of Solo Harmonites & Pan Knights - Owen Serrette has passed
When Steel Talks extends condolences to the family and friends of Owen Serrette.
"I believe that the steel pan is 'the instrument' of the 21st century and, if marketed as, say, the reggae, will definitely be the instrument of the music world." --- Owen SerretteIn 1992, it was his recommendation to the Patrick Manning administration, that led to pan being declared "the national instrument of T&T."The formation of Panvesco and the introduction of the Panyard Development Programme stand out as just two of many success stories of Serrette's stewardship. It was during his tenure at the helm of Pan Trinbago that the business sector was said to be "most pan friendly," seen as a declaration of its confidence in the national steelband organisation.Programmes initiated under Serrette's stewardship which provided sponsorship to the steelband fraternity included the National Junior Panorama and National Junior Steelband Music Festival competitions; Pan on the Road competitions; Arima Panorama; Carnival Monday Night Steelband Explosion; Borough of Point Fortin Pan on the Move; Pan Chutney; Pan Ramajay; Hindi Foundation's Steelband competition; The Panman's Ball; Steelband Week and many more.Serrette initiated music literacy for pan musicians at UWI, no doubt inspired to do so having being a member of the UWI steelband in Mona, Jamaica in 1973.He also instituted training in management and administration for young managers of member steelbands. He insisted, and still insists, that pan musicians become musically literate and be referred as "musicians," and not panmen...As president of Pan Trinbago, in order to internationalise the organisation, Serrette established Pan Trinbago chapters in Canada, New York and Arizona, and formed alliances with Caribbean steelband organisations.Cultural exchange programmes were also established, with lasting relationships, whereby local musicians, tuners and arrangers secured performances and work abroad.An amazing caveat of Serrette's stint as president is that he served strictly in a voluntary capacity. "At no time during the years I spent as president of Pan Trinbago did I receive a salary," he revealed. See more -- Celebrating an outcast