If you will be in Trinidad & Tobago in the coming two weeks – you will realize that one of the premier events of Carnival (Feb 5-9) is panorama or steelpan competitions. This evening, Jan. 25, a documentary: “Steel Drum and PAN! Our Music Odyssey,” will be broadcast on many American Public Television and World Channel stations across the U.S. (8pm, EST; 5pm PT.)
“Steel Drum and PAN! Our Music Odyssey” is part of this season’s TV series presented by AfroPoP: The Ultimate Cultural Exchange—the nation’s only documentary series on contemporary art, life and culture across the African Diaspora.
Pan! Our Music Odyssey is written by Kim Johnson. It is a tale of how the steel drum came to be—and how it came to be so big! AfroPoP is hosted by Jussie Smollett, star of the hit FOX TV show Empire, produced by National Black Programming Consortium (NBPC) and co-presented by American Public Television (APT).
Through docudrama, competition footage and interviews, Pan! Our Music Odyssey explores the development of the steel drum in Trinidad & Tobago to its place as a musical force around the world. While, initially, urban youth would form bands that became bitter and often bloody rivalries, soon their fierce loyalties played out in competitions. The film captures the excitement as musicians show up with their “A” game at Panorama, the ultimate international steel band competition.