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STEEL DRUM WINNERS (article first published : 2000-11-28)

Some 1,500 participants and an audience numbering the same amount thronged to Durban Botanic Gardens on Sunday for the sixth annual People’s Bank Steel Drum Festival.

This year, the programme was extended to include an appearance by the NEDCOR Community Centre Bands from Umlazi and Chesterville as well as a performance of popular light music by South Africa’s only full-time professional orchestra, the KZN Philharmonic.

The inter-school steel drum competition featured over 1,500 children and 60 different bands. The judges were extremely impressed at the scope and diversity of the numbers chosen and even bands who had joined the steel drum school programme fairly recently acquitted themselves well.

Winner of the junior section was Atholl Heights Primary followed by Northcrest Primary. In the senior section, several times winner Sacred Heart gave a professional and mature performance to regain the top prize while Westville Girls came second. The KZN Philharmonic Spirit Trophy for the group that reflected the spirit of steel drum music was shared by Boys Hope and Stellawood Primary.

Founders of the Steel Drum Foundation Bryan Clarke and Dobri Paliev originally launched the idea of teaching children music through the medium of the steel drum as an outreach programme of the KZNPO. They were extremely happy with the success of the festival and are now turning their attentions towards next year’s event!

More details on the Steel Drum Foundation or to hire the professional steel drum group for functions, etc. contact Bryan on 083 777-6762 or Dobri on 083 777-6743. e-mail bclarke@iafrica.com




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