44 gallon tenor pan, made by a Trinidadian pan maker in the Ellie Mannette F# style. This instrument was brought to Australia in the 1970s by the touring Amral's Trinidad Cavaliers Steel band. It is a soprano pan, commonly referred to as a tenor pan. With the invention of the classic Middle C soprano pan now standardised, this F# pan is seldom used by professional pan players. This pan is the sister pan of the one Brian Thomas of CaribVic played in the 1970s and 80s. The pan played by striking it with a pair of straight sticks tipped with rubber.

The steel pan was invented in Trinidad in the 1930s and is the only percussion instrument to be invented in the 20th century. Traditionally, steel pans were made from used oil barrels, however today many are made according to the technical specifications of musicians. The sheet metal is stretched and hammered into a bowl shape and different note patterns are shaped and moulded in the surface. The larger the oval the lower the tone. After the tempering, the notes have to be softened and tuned. Steelpans are individual instruments and depending on the needs of the musician, might have up to thirty soprano range notes on a single pan or only three base range notes and be played in a set of six pans.

Steelbands have extensive repertoires and in Trinidad have a tradition of re-interpreting the current year's calypsos for Carnival performance. Many steelbands also adapt and perform other types of music, especially Latin, jazz, film and pop music. This pan was donated by Denis Gonzalez, teacher, performer and founder of the NSW Schools Steel Band Association.

Physical Description

Ellie Mannette old fashioned 44 gallon tenor pan coloured blue on the outside with beaten circle and line patterns on the inside. Steelpan comes with two sticks and a stand.


This steelpan is significant because it was used by the Victorian Caribbean community after it was left in Victoria by the Amral Cavaliers Steelband in the 1970s.

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