St Nicholas drummers win national competition

2009-08-20 00:00

THE St Nicholas Diocesan School Steel Drum Band emerged victorious in two categories at the National Steel Drum Band Competition, which was held in Durban last Thursday.

The competition is hosted by the Creative Arts Youth Festival and the school won the Best Primary School Band, the Best High School Band Categories and the Best Individual Performance.

“This school has had an incredible record there,” steel drum teacher Bryan Clarke told The Witness. “The very first year that they were there they won it. They’re known among the other schools as the school to beat.”

St Nicholas has won five out of its six appearances, says Clarke, who teaches steel drums at various schools around the province.

Headmaster Mike Ford says that music is one of the activities at St Nicholas that most of the pupils get involved in or aspire to.

“You get these kids who play South African schools basketball, but are also lead melody players in the band. They become role models for the rest of the school.”

Ford and Clarke have a “master plan” to one day incorporate a “massive, 300-strong” steel drum band with children from schools all over KZN to perform at a big event.

“We’ve got enough steel drums in KZN to have 200 learners all playing at once,” says Clarke.

“And then the plan is to add the 100-strong drumline.”

“I don’t know where we’d put them,” says Ford. “But we’ll find somewhere. Maybe in front of the city hall.”

Watch the video of the band here.

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