Bream Bay College's steel pan musicians are buzzing after four days of international musical interactions, and the prospect of collaborating with the Auckland Philharmonia Orchestra.
Twelve students, accompanied by parents and two staff members Scott Brown and Vivienne Milton, headed across to Brisbane last week for Panzfest 2019, a celebration of steel pan band music.
Bream Bay's bands are The Panimals and Steel Pandas. The students had a massive impact on the festival, which was predominantly made up of adult bands, said Brown.
The Panimals arranged and performed their own Panorama piece "Outta de Box" which won second place in the Arrangement category.
Joseph Brady, Daniel Orr, Laura Corbet and Mirabella Uphof also played in a band The Fascinators Down Under, assembled for the festival with performers selected and led by pan master Lennox Jordan.
This performance took out the first-place prize in both the Arrangement and Performance categories.
Mirabella Uphof and Maraea Henry took an amazing opportunity and performed "Fanfare for the Common Man" on pan with the Kelvin Grove Wind Orchestra, which opened the festival.
Around 70 wind instruments accompanied by steelpan produced an incredible sound, said Brown.
For the blockorama, a showcase of five songs from each band, The Panimals presented theirs which was described by many as creating a statement.
Steel Panda's performance later in the day had the audience dancing and singing along.
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The Panimals were a feature of the Carnival night, providing the backing band on steelpan for vocalist Errol Renaud's Calypso songs. They also performed as The Panimals Calypso band, playing an original Calypso song on more traditional instruments; guitar, bass, keys and tenor pan, supporting Maraea on vocals.
It was this level of contribution which awarded The Panimals the certificate for participating to the fullest in Panzfest 2019, and Brown describes the festival as a huge success for all involved. The Panimals are currently in discussion to collaborate with the Auckland Philharmonia Orchestra later this year.
Students to feed community
Bream Bay College's horticulture department have received a $2000 grant towards the community garden work they do with the Bream Bay Community Trust.
The money from the Tai Tokerau Kai Ora fund, which is aimed at enabling Northlanders to grow and eat nutritious and sustainably grown local food, will go towards the year 9 students' "Feeding the community project".
The project began last year as a way of getting students from the college working with community members to tend the garden at the Bream Bay Trust, producing fresh fruit and vegetables.
The produce is free, and anyone in the community can help themselves to it – either from the local Sharing Sheds or the gardens themselves.
Horticulture teacher Alison Jamieson hopes that as well as providing fresh food for the community, the project will also build positive relationships between the school students and the community.
"It's a place where we can all learn from each other and pass on knowledge and skills that might otherwise be lost to future generations."
The fund money will buy new garden tools, edible fruit trees and signs to ensure people know they can get involved.
Jamieson said the Trust, along with Norma Scobie, Sue Rudman and Tracey Collins have contributed time and energy to the project.
Jamieson said she would like to encourage people who are interested in getting involved to call in and see them. "Norma, myself and the year 9 horticulture students are usually there on a Friday afternoon."
Swimmers at championships
Four Bream Bay swimmers will compete at the 2019 NZ Short Course championships this week in Auckland, pitting themselves against the best in the country.
The meet, swum over a 25m length pool at the Owen G Glenn National Aquatic Centre, is run in both age group and open formats.
Bream Bay's swimmers competing and their events are: Rebecca Reade (17) 100m backstroke, 200m backstroke, 100m butterfly; Luca Matenga (15) 100m breaststroke, 100m backstroke, 50m breaststroke; Samantha Dutton (15) 100m breaststroke, 50m breaststroke; Kiera Carroll (15) 100m breaststroke.
Animal blessing service
It's time to take your animals to church – this Sunday is the annual St Francis of Assisi Day animal blessing service at St Paul's Anglican church hall on Tamingi Street, Ruakākā (next to the St John ambulance station). Bring your furry, feathered or finned friends for a fun time and a lovely blessing along at 9.30am, all welcome.
Calling senior cricketers
If you are keen to play senior cricket this summer there is still time to join the Bream Bay men's team. Senior cricket starts this weekend and Bream Bay's team have practice tonight from 6pm at the Bream Bay College nets. This is for players from year 9 to adult. To register your interest, turn up to practice or contact Satinder Singh on 021 923 236.
Cafe car boot sale and market
There is a market and car boot sale at Ruakākā cafe Togs Togs Undies this Sunday from 8am to 1pm, opposite the Ruakākā Motocross track down Lakeside Park Road. Message the café on Facebook or email them at email@example.com to book your spot.
There's another market on Sunday from 9am to 12pm at Mangapai Hall on McAlister Road, this one a mix of antique treasures and fresh produce. Stalls are $10, contact Delphine 022 671 6143 to book.
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