British artist Jeremy Deller teamed up with Michelle Huggins-Watts, Trinidad's “First Lady” of the steel pan, on a project to bring more young people into steel band music. Their collaboration combined their very different skills to create a brand new, one-off performance and music event in Trinidad.
Jeremy Deller, speaking before the collaboration said: “For a long time I’ve been interested in steel bands. Trinidad is the home of steel bands so it makes sense to go to that place and see what you can come up with.” Jeremy is a celebrated conceptual, video and installation artist, a hugely influential figure on the international contemporary art scene.
Michelle Huggins-Watts, speaking about the song they planned to use in the collaboration said: “It’s really different, not something you’d readily hear on the pan – I’m really looking forward to working on this piece!” Michelle is the band leader and musical arranger of a champion Trinidadian steel pan band, she has toured the world, and is a music teacher at Trinity College where she runs a junior pan band.
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