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Tottenham teenagers take part in summer music programme
Teenagers from Tottenham have been learning the steel pans as part of a summer music programme.
More than 25 teenagers from the ages of 13 to 19 have been learning the steel pans at The Green Church of England Primary School, in Somerset Road, for the past four weeks.
Pupils with very little experience spend a week learning the instrument and by the end of five days they are able to play eight songs, which they perform in front of their parents on Fridays.
Their teacher is Maisha Adams-Amalemba, who was born and raised in Tottenham, learnt to play the steel pan while she was at school.
The 24-year-old said: “When we first started the summer programme not many children turned up, but over the last few weeks, through word of mouth, the classes have grown and we have about 25 coming along.
“We’ve had really good feedback from parents who say they are really impressed and said it’s good to see so many boys taking part and sticking to it.
“It’s a great way for young people to take part in something and be part of the community.”
In the free classes, pupils are taught a number of songs including calypso classics and pop songs including numbers by Michael Jackson, The Specials and Shaggy.
Daniel Hernandez, 14, from Tottenham said: “It’s been really good fun and I’ve really enjoyed learning a new instrument.
“The reason why I wanted to do it was to learn about the history and culture of my county. The steel pans are originated in Trinidad and Tobago and it’s been great to learn about my heritage.”
The classes have been organised by Haringey Steel Band which includes 30 young people who practice at the school and perform around the borough.
As they get older, they are able to join the highly acclaimed Haringey Steel Orchestra which has performed at the Notting Hill Carnival and the School Proms.