Republic Bank Praised For Commitment To Development Of Steel Pan


Sweet pan music rang out at Republic Bank’s Six Roads Branch on Friday during the media launch of Republic Bank Pandemonium, courtesy of 17 members of staff who came together to train for six weeks to perform at the launch.

The idea to form the staff orchestra was the brainchild of Teller of the Six Roads Branch, Damian Leacock. An invitation went out to staff to solicit participation and the response was overwhelming. Unfortunately only a small group was able to be accommodated given the time frame. However, staff got into their groove as they performed for the lively, receptive crowd made up of officials from the National Cultural Foundation, the Barbados National Youth Orchestra, Bank staff, members of the media and visitors to the popular Six Roads Complex.

This is the second year that Republic Bank is sponsoring Pandemonium which will be held on Sunday, July 16, at the National Botanical Gardens. The staff members wanted to show their personal love of pan and Leacock said the team “had a blast” during their training sessions. He has big plans for the future.

“I already have it in mind to make this a usual gig. The experience so far was extremely fun for the Republic Bank team and, if we can, this could become a tradition to open every year with the group getting bigger and bigger,” he said.

The group was made up of senior members of management and other workers from across the Bank’s network. They trained with teachers from the National Youth Steel Orchestra every Saturday for six weeks. Their performance was well received by those attending the media launch.

Musical Director of the youth orchestra, Lowry Worrell, said, “This shows how invested the sponsor is in the development of pan because I don’t think we’ve ever seen anything like this here in Barbados, that I know of, where a sponsor has decided that they want to play at the launch. It was a fun idea. When they brought it, I was like, ‘wow, this is incredible!’ “It hits home that it is in the heart of Republic Bank to invest in pan in Barbados,” he said.

Although no one in the group had ever played pan before, Worrell said they “improved tremendously” over the course of the one hour training sessions. With a limited training period, the group immediately began learning the melodies to the two songs which they performed at the launch event.

Worrell said the initiative shows that Republic Bank has a “deep, deep sense of commitment” to the development of pan in Barbados.

The staff members who showed off their new pan-playing skills at the media launch were: General Manager, Retail & Operations, Sharon Zephirin; Manager Retail Services, Six Roads Branch, Solange Bruce; Customer Service Manager, Limegrove Branch, Renata Goodman; Customer Service Manager, Worthing Branch, Nikita Norgrove; Manager, Marketing & Corporate Communications, Mischa Knight; Manager, Michelle Williams-Boyce; Retail Services Manager, Broad Street Branch, Stacey Hem Lee; Rachel Joseph; Olivia Green; Richelle Bryan; Nikita Ellis; Nikita Proverbs; Rhea Alleyne; Damian Leacock; Daren Greaves; Shamar Roberts; and Terri-Anne Johnson.

So appreciative of the staff’s skills were the audience that the inaugural Republic Bank Steel Orchestra were given a special invitation to perform at the upcoming Republic Bank Pandemonium which will be held on Sunday, July 16, 2023. See you there!

June 14, 2023
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