This year, Nueva music teacher Jim Munzenrider and middle school head Liza Raynal chaperoned an optional trip to Trinidad over February break for ten steelpan players ranging from 7th through 11th grade. The last group of students who travelled to Trinidad are now in college and we were thrilled to return.
This is the time in the pre-Lenten calendar that the island of Trinidad — along with Rio, New Orleans, and Venice — gears up for carnival. The steel drum, a ubiquitous presence at Nueva, was born on Trinidad and our group took a pilgrimage to see what the instrument truly sounds like when played as a part of a 100-piece band.
Over the course of the trip, the group listened to calypsonians play, learned to walk on stilts, visited monuments, and heard pan, pan, pan. A full-body arts and cultural immersion, the Trinidad trip exposed students to the sound, color, music, and art of cultural resistance.
Here are some “dispatches from the field”, excerpted from blogs sent home to families during our first-ever, one-school international trip.
March 10, 2017