They’ve won the National Secondary Schools Junior Panorama competition twice since their inception six years ago.
And now the students of Naparima College and Naparima Girls’ High School want this country to know that NAPS Combined Steel Orchestra will continue to be a force to reckon with.
In celebration of their victory on Tuesday, the students of both schools paid tribute to those who helped them soar to success.
“North South East West! Naparima is the best!!!” they chanted as they waved flags to their rendition of Bunji Garlin’s Big Bad Soca.
As the band burst out in a thunderous rhythm of victory, the chairman of Unipet, Dr Afraz Ali, reminded the students of the reasons they secured victory.
“ Make some noise,” he shouted as they danced, cheered and screamed their love for their music arranger Shaquille Vincent and drill masters Kevon Duncan and Desree Seecharan.
Unipet was the orchestra’s main sponsor and Ali reminded the students about the value of hard work and dedication.
“You remember when we first entered, people wanted to know what we doing there, well now they know!!” Ali declared as the audience cheered and vowed: “We are going to do it again.”
He said other schools can learn from the NAPS Combined Orchestra.
“The reason for your success is that when you collaborate and work as a team, when you respect yourselves and others and when you understand there are people who can guide you to be the best you can be, you will achieve,” he said.
He lauded band manager Amanda Ramjohn, Duncan, also called Smiley along with Vincent and Seecharan, a past student of Naparima Girls’ High School. He described Vincent as ‘extremely talented.”
Meanwhile, Joel Simmons, president of Naparima College Association of Past Students, also congratulated the team.
“Naparima College is the greatest college of T&T. Look at what we are doing. Everything we put our hands on, excellence!” he said.
“Everyone gave the best of themselves and I am so happy about the achievements of this team. We are the best Secondary School in Trinidad and Tobago,” Simmons added.
Ramjohn, who delivered the victory speech said NAPS Combined had demonstrated their exceptional talent.
“Coupled with your positive mindset, your determination, sacrifices, your ability to overcome challenges and most importantly, your belief in God, you have proved that nothing is possible,” Ramjohn said.
Principal Roger Ali said the achievement was the result of hard work and dedication.
Band captain Edison Dean held up the trophy as the students cheered. Dean said the victory was sweet as it was his last year playing for the band. He said he was eager to see what the band will achieve in the future.
San Fernando Mayor Junia Regrello celebrated with the students saying he started playing the pan at age 13 and played in London and other parts of the world.
“There is so much that pan can contribute to your success. You have amazing music by Shaquille,” he said. He said three key elements make Panorama successful–good music, good players and good instruments and you were able to put all three together and that’s why you were successful,” Regrello said.
NAPS Combined includes students from Naparima College and Naparima Girls’ High School. They last won the Junior Panorama in 2019.