ARKADELPHIA — Ouachita Baptist University’s steel drum bands will come together to present their fall concert on Monday Dec. 3 at 7:30 p.m. in Ouachita’s McBeth Recital Hall in Mabee Fine Arts Center. The concert is free and open to the public.
“This will be the first Ouachita Steel Drum Band concert to feature not just two but four different steel bands!” said Dr. Ryan Lewis associate professor of music and director of the steel ensembles.
To begin Tiger Steel Ouachita’s advanced steel band will perform “Jump in the Line” by Harry Belafonte “Oye Como Va” by Tito Puente and Carlos Santana and “Brown Eyed Girl” by Van Morrison. Pan Harmony will then perform “Jingle Bells” and “Funkytown” by Lipps Inc. Pan Harmony is an after-school community steel band made up of students from Peake Elementary School and led by Ouachita students. Next Pan Jouvet Ouachita’s beginner steel band will perform “Tay Lay Lay” by Lord Kitchener and “O Christmas Tree.” Steel Kickin’ the first Ouachita faculty and staff steel drum band will present “Island in the Sun” by Harry Belafonte and “Can’t Help Falling in Love with You” by Elvis Presley before Tiger Steel concludes the concert with “Chameleon” by Herbie Hancock and “Pan in A Minor” by Lord Kitchener and arranged by Jit Samaroo.
While the Ouachita steel bands’ performance includes everything from rock and pop tunes to Christmas music roughly half of the songs are calypso and Soca tunes. Lewis said he hopes the steel band concert will transport the audience to the Caribbean while exposing them to a versatile instrument.
“We are playing instruments from Trinidad and Tobago and we want to honor the people there by promoting their indigenous styles of music on their national instrument” Lewis said.
“Dr. Lewis really makes it feel like you’re on an island in the sun listening to Caribbean music!” said Hannah Saunders a Tiger Steel member and senior musical theatre major from St. Paul Ark.
Hannah Terry a sophomore Christian studies/Christian missions major from Texarkana Ark. assists with the after-school steel band Pan Harmony. “The kids have fun and you can see the joy on their faces. I think we all need a little bit more of that in our lives” she said. “I look forward to helping teach them and playing with them each week.”
For more information contact Dr. Ryan Lewis at (870) 245-5421 or firstname.lastname@example.org or visit www.obu.edu/percussion.