As part of the Tuesday enrichment programme, sixth formers enjoyed the opportunity to form an impromptu steel pan band when steel-pan workshop providers ‘Spangle’ visited the school this week.
Steel pan drumming originated in Trinidad and Tobago, where old oil drums were cut down and their bases skilfully shaped by hammering to produce a range of notes. Since the Second World War the distinctive Caribbean sound produced by tin pan ensembles has become famous across the world. The instruments are ‘pans’ rather than drums because they are rigid rather than possessing a stretched membrane – but as our sixth formers discovered, playing technique is similar to drumming and they soon had an impressive set of rhythms going, guided carefully by the experts from Spangle.
After school, it was the staff’s turn and anybody passing the sixth form common room after four o’clock would have heard a not-half-bad version of Bob Marley’s ‘No Woman No Cry’ being tapped out, followed by a surprisingly melodic ‘The Lion Sleeps Tonight’.
It was a most instructive and enjoyable session for both groups, and we hope to welcome Spangle to further school events in the future.