A bass player from Melodians Steel Orchestra during their performance of Vivir Mi Vida during the National Pan Event, Medium Bands category, at Carnival City Queen's Park Savannah, Port-of-Spain, as part of the Taste of Carnival, yesterday.

Pan lovers came with their coolers and drinks to hear sweet pan music in the Grand Stand on Saturday and weren’t disappointed. It wasn’t a Panorama competition, however, the medium and large steelbands that took part in the “Musical Showdown in De Big Yard” played their hearts out in sheer joy to the appreciative audience.

They were vying for patrons’ support instead in the People’s Choice Award, where people can vote for which steelband they thought played the best.

To vote, they had to go to the FUNDMETNT.COM site, search “Musical Showdown in De Big Yard” click the link, click donate now and write a brief message with their band’s name for People’s Choice.

Eleven medium and 12 large steelbands engaged in a clash of musical steel titans. The event was hosted by Pan Trinbago in collaboration with the National Carnival Commission.

Medium bands played either a Panorama-arranged song or a Bomb tune, while the large bands performed both genres.

The Tobago-based Katzenjammers Steel Orchestra made a guest appearance.

Some bands came with multiple flagbearers in Carnival costumes. Power Stars Steel Orchestra played Long Time and accompanied on stage by two Carnival floats.

All the bands played with frenetic energy and exuberance pent up after two years without Panorama.

National Panorama Medium Band 2020 Champions NGC Couva Joylanders was the last medium band to perform and put on a scintillating and riveting performance playing Essence and Free Up.

Many of their players wore face shields and the joy was evident as their performance was accentuated by special effects, strobe lights confetti and smoke.