Snowflakes on Steel celebrates 23 years


By Macera

Even though the winter has been comparatively mild, our bodies are so pampered and softened by the last few years of “pleasant” temperatures that folk who once laughed at the thermometer when it registered minus 25, now shiver as it hovers around a mere zero.

But there is no circumstance that does not have an antidote, particularly when that circumstance is a Canadian winter. So when Jack Frost begins to nip, Caribbean folk will either hightail it outta town or go to a couple of tried and true standbys, kaiso and pan, to lift the spirits during those long, dark and sunless days

To the rescue comes the Pan Arts Network, which is staging its Annual 23rd Snowflakes on Steel showcase on Saturday January 18th 2020. This is the longest running Steelband showcase in Canada, and in the past has featured several community bands. The good thing for those bands is that they get to play to sold out audiences year after year. This year will be no different.

The event takes place at the Chinese Cultural centre P.C Ho in Scarborough. This year Snowflakes will feature several bands: Panatics Steelband Network, Gemini Pan Groove Afropan Steelband ( the People’s Band ) and the perennial pan champions, Pan Fantasy Steelband.  Add to that the Ngoma Ensemble, Dance Caribe Performing Company, lots of dancers and drummers plus several new “surprise” young pan artist, and you are guaranteed a wonderful evening of steelpan music to give you warmth to last for the rest of winter.

On that night the Pioneer of Pan prize will be awarded, while Michelle Wade will collect a well-deserved Woman In Pan award. The incomparable Itah Sadu will conduct proceedings with her unusual witty brilliance.

Wendy Jones, Executive Director of Pan Arts Network, Captain of Pan Fantasy Steelband or “She who moves and shakes pan in this town”, told the Caribbean Camera, “The bands are well rehearsed and ready to go.” We believe her because we have been there 22 times before, and know it will be so.

Snowflakes will be held on Saturday January 18th at the Chinese Cultural Centre in the 650-seat P.C. Ho Theatre, 5183 Sheppard Avenue East, Scarborough.  Tickets are $35 in advance or $40 at the door, and may be bought on line. Doors open at 5pm, showtime 7pm.

Contact Wendy at 416 525 2391 or Earl at 416 953 0905. Several Bands also have tickets on sale.