Reflections on the Development of Steelpan Music: Compositions for Steel Orchestra
Redhead, Michael Matthew
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The steelpan is a musical instrument created in Trinidad and Tobago circa 1930s. It has secured a place in the countrys cultural identity as one of its most important musical developments. It is authenticated as an orchestral instrument in which skilled players may perform any fugue or arrangement in any genre of music. Its creation and development by ingenious men and women with limited resources cannot be overstated; and ironically, an upper and condescending class who failed or refused to acknowledge a musical phenomenon in its embryonic stage, now shares equally in the pride and international recognition of this national treasure that has gained critical acceptance from musicologists and other scholarly experts. The accidental discovery of the affectionately nicknamed pan, its development and eventual acceptance into the family of idiophones, provide the inspiration for a series of compositions reflected in this thesis.