Show brings music education to youth

Show brings music education to youth|Show brings music education to youth|Show brings music education to youth
How high: Young dancers performing ballet on stilts at a previous Tropicalfete countdown show last year.
Brittany Somerset

The sixth annual Tropicalfete Countdown is returning for a music-filled educational event at the Brooklyn Music School on Dec. 18.

The highlight of the engagement will be a youth Steel Pan ensemble that will play Caribbean and American tunes, live music from local artists, and even a dance presentation where dancers will do ballet on stilts, said the organizer.

“When the band is performing, we will have our stilt walkers and masqueraders come out,” said Alton Aimable, organizer and founder of Tropicalfete. “We’ve done this before but it will be new for most of audiences in there.”

The event also boasts of a performance from Klick Band, a brass band expected to play some new songs for big band music lovers. The 25- member steel pan band — all young players from 6–18 years old, will open the show with the national anthem and play some popular pop songs throughout the show, said Aimable.

During the show there will be appearances from New York-based Caribbean artists Mesha Steele, Daria Primus, Sassy Ramatour and Dr. Witty, who are set to perform soca, reggae and calypso songs respectively.

The Tropicalfete Steel Pan Ensemble playing some popular tunes for the guests.
Brittany Somerset

There will also an award ceremony to honor music producer, Roger Meltzer who is hosting a youth workshop on music rights, Aimable said.

“He has taught many workshops on music royalties — this workshop will teach the young how to copyright and protect themselves from theft, and how to use the media,” he said.

Since 2011, Tropicalfete established itself as a non-profit to promote and provide educational services and programs on Caribbean culture and youth.

Aimable said he carefully planned the show to be exciting and children-friendly, to attract everyone of Caribbean descent to enjoy the activities. He also said his priority is the education of the youth and hopes the show encourages more sign-ups for Tropicalfete’s musical program, which will begin in January.

“One of the reasons we work all year is because we work on our costumes and make sure they’re not skimpy — because we are very family friendly,” he said. “It’s always good to support youth and at the end of day and this is a great musical experience to enjoy and what we have to offer as Caribbean people.”

Many of the members of the Tropicalfete Steel Pan ensemble are youth from age 6–18 years old.
Brittany Somerset

Reach reporter Alexandra Simon at (718) 260–8310 or e-mail her at asimo[email protected]

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