File: Starlift takes part in the Republic Day J’Ouvert celebrations at the Invaders’ Hawaiian Invasion, Invaders Pan Yard, Tragarete Road, September 2019.

Although there will be no Panorama this year, Starlift Steel Orchestra has undergone a branding change.

In a release on Thursday Proman announced Starlift had been rebranded as the Proman Starlift Steel Orchestra.

The band’s main sponsor for the past six years had been Methanol Holdings (Trinidad) Limited which is a member of the Proman group of companies.

However, the company said, “The transition of the band to Proman Starlift integrates the steel orchestra further within Proman’s portfolio of local sustainable investments and aligns the company’s long-term commitment to promoting Trinidad and Tobago’s indigenous arts and cultural expressions.”

The rebranding also coincides with the band’s 65th anniversary.

In the release, Proman said this was a remarkable legacy achievement that highlights the band’s contribution to the development of local music, carnival arts, and culture.

Starlift has been a finalist in Panorama 28 times, being crowned Panorama champion three times. Starlift has also won the Band of the Day Competition twenty-one (21) times in the last twenty-five (25) years.

Claus Cronberger, Proman’s managing director in Trinidad said, “At Proman, we are very happy to continue to build our solid partnership with the Proman Starlift Steel Orchestra, an important bedrock to Trinidad and Tobago’s pan fraternity,”

He continued, “As the leading petrochemical company in Trinidad and Tobago, it gives us great pride to invest in this country’s indigenous culture, provide opportunities for young people through music, learn from the experiences of pan elders, all while supporting a notable and progressive band like the Proman Starlift Steel Orchestra. This relationship is not just an investment in the band, it is also an expression of our long-term commitment to our local communities in Trinidad and Tobago.”

Starlift band captain Michael Franco said, “MHTL’s commitment to the band has been vital over the years, and we have reaped significant benefits from this partnership in terms of the band’s and community’s development. We are grateful to Proman for their continued and dedicated support, particularly as we grapple with the effects of the COVID-19 pandemic on the Arts and Culture sector. The band’s rebranding comes at an ideal moment as we prepare to herald in a new period of development with the hope and anticipation of a better year ahead, renamed with our Proman brand, but with the same loyal support.”

Franco said the rebrand also allowed the band to make plans going forward in spite of the uncertainty caused by the pandemic.

He said, “Knowing that we have a reliable and caring partner in Proman who is committed to our band’s success is a great reminder that we can look forward to even more successful years ahead.