Steelband performs tonight

Carrie Whitaker and Carrie Whitaker

The sound can be high or low, sharp or echoing — all depending on the way the steel is bent.

But, University student Gerard Boucaud hopes the steel drum sound will effect more than the ears. He hopes to reach the hearts and minds of the Bowling Green community.

Tonight the BGSU Caribbean Association welcomes The Florida Memorial College Steelband, who will perform at 8 p.m. in Kobacker Hall of the Moore Music Arts Center.

The free event is the feature act of Pan Fest 2004, an event the assocation hopes to bring them a step closer to their mission.

“We want to promote and increase cultural and intellectual diversitythrough sponsorship of campus and community-wide programs reflecting Caribbean heritage, history, society and culture,” said Boucaud, chair of Pan Fest 2004.

The steel pan drum is an indigenous instrument that was created in Trinidad and Tobago.

It was orginally played in a calypso style, Boucard said, but now is played all over the world in classical, jazz and contemporary forms.

Students and community members are also invited to a free workshop from 2:30-4:30 p.m. on Friday in the same loc where they can learn to play a steel drum.

“It didn’t make sense to bring [the band] all the way here, without giving students the chance to learn how to play,” Boucaud said.

The members of the Florida Memorial College Steelband are certainly qualified to teach, he added.

The band has performed internationally, winning the ensamble category at the World Steel Band Festival in 2000. Many members have also won in the soloist categories at the Festival.

Students should take advantage of events such as this, Boucaud said, so the University community can become more integrated.

“Getting to know more about each other is the main issue I think,” he said. “Other than the fact we are in an educational community and all knowledge is meant to be share with others.”

Donations for the Hurricane Relief Fund are welcome during the concert and workshop. The event is also sponsored by Pepsi and the University’s Ethnic Cultural Arts Program.

For more information contact Boucaud at 372-6173.