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Competition heats up in South/Central pan prelims

By Sue-Ann Wayow sue-ann.wayow@trinidadexpress.com

THE Pleasantville Community Centre in San Fernando was transformed on Saturday night to host the South/Central National Single Pan Bands preliminaries. Ten bands performed trying woo the four judges to place them into the final round of the competition. Those who participated were very confident that they did well enough to emerge as champions.

The event was produced by the South/Central Regional Executive of Pan Trinbago and was entitled "Lighting De Fire". It initially featured a competition for the Best Flag Waver and an After Party Rama Drama. The competition for Best Flag Waver was cancelled on the night of the event.

The ten groups who participated were Shades In Steel, Kings Row Retro, Jah Roots, La Romaine Super Vibes, Self Help Marines, New Age Trendsetters, Rio Claro Koskeros, Highlighters, St Thomas Silver Stars and Fyzabad 4th Dimension. The competition attracted a large crowd with many spectators on the fence.

Shades In Steel performed first playing to the tune of "Suck Meh Soucouyant" sung by Edwin Ayoung "Crazy" who is also the composer of the song.

Shades in Steel were the last south band to win the National Panorama competition in 2002 and they won the South/Central zone categories nine times said Andy Bissessar Jr. They are sponsored by the Party Time Racing Team headed by drag-racing icon Sheldon Bissessar. Bissessar's brother, Andy Bissessar, is the captain of the band.

Garvin Williams, captain and sponsor of the band La Romaine Super Vibes, said his group did "excellent." He said the majority of the band were new members playing in the competition for the first time. All the performers ages were between seven and 14 years, Williams said.

The judges were Damion Phillip, Roger Sardinah, Joanna Short and Ian Anthony.

San Fernando Mayor Dr Navi Muradali and councillor for Pleasantville Robert Parris attended the event.

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