There was favouritism at the Panorama competition

first_imgDear Editor,What were the judges looking for in deciding the winner of the Senior Panorama Competition 2018?It was observed that favouritism and disregard for the judging rules of the competition were on full display at the annual Panorama Competition. The judges, apart from being officials of the Department of Culture, were biased in their rulings and approach to judging.The rules and guidelines of the competition clearly state, in section (5), that during the process of judging the event, all officials are expected to conduct themselves in a proper manner. Judges should not communicate with any of the competitors and/or their sponsors, supporters, or members of the media for the entire duration of the competition.  This was not the case on the night of the competition.The coordinator was supposed to be Mr. Xavier, but Mr. Tyndall, who works for the same office, being the coordinator of the Mash Committee and past leader of the band that won, was seen mingling with the judges, bringing the results into disrepute; which brings a clear case of conflict of interest because the National School of Music Band is owned by the Department of Culture.Now if I owned that band, and all the judging officials came from me, what would people think and assume? It can also be noted that the outcome in judging for the past few years has been the same. This is disgusting, because the outcome seems to always be in favour of the National Band.No way, in my music knowledge, or listening to steel pan music and soliciting the views of others, could the National Band have emerged winners in front of the Guyana Police Force Band, which were the definite crowd pleasers — playing well with a clean sound, good balance, and with proper melody and audio coming from all sections of the band.At no time did they break the rules of the competition, unlike the National Band, whose members gyrated in front of the judges in clear violation of the rules and standing orders of the competition and still emerged victorious.Where are we going with competitions and judging in Guyana if injustices like this one keeps occurring? There were other bands that were eliminated for violating competition rules, but this was not the issue with the National Band. It was a great act of favouritism.Not only was this attitude deemed bad for pan music lovers, but also for the players, who try desperately to keep the art alive. If this is allowed to continue, sad to say, steel band competition is heading for a doomsday. Please, Mr. Tyndall and others, fair and neutral judges are what we need to avoid conflict of interest and to keep the art alive and well.Neil CortSteel Pan Loverlast_img read more