The music programme at the Irving Wilson School has received some much needed support from the Zulu International Crop Over masquerade band.
The special needs school in the Pine received a $1,500 gift of musical equipment comprising a flute, trumpet and a drum set.
Shauntel Lynch, a teacher at the school, said the music programme was started back in February of 2015 with just students from the Autistic Department. However, it was subsequently expanded to include students from the Visually and Hearing Impaired Department.
The programme started with a six-week drumming course taught by calypsonian Adjonijah. Then it moved to a once a week class with steel pan player, Terry Mexican Arthur.
“I managed to get him to come once a week and the first major production was performing for the Governor-General. We spent weeks preparing for that,” Lynch said.
Recognizing the talent among the special kids, Lynch said the school needed sponsorship to sustain the programme. An appeal for assistance was made but unfortunately fell through.
However, on March 6, the General Manger of Zulu, Andre Wharton, made a surprise visit to the school. “He just turned up out of the blue. He wasn’t called and said I want to do something for you,” Lynch said, adding that a list of things was requested.
“We wanted to do something different this year,” Wharton said at the presentation. “Let’s do something for somebody that most people don’t think about doing something for.”
“We made an appeal from our launch event,” he added. “Zulu International stands proud and ready to contribute to this programme as much as we can.”
Following the presentation, the students performed a number of popular songs and then accompanied soca queen, Alison Hinds, as she sang her popular song Roll It.
Hinds was impressed with the talent of the kids.