Pans on Fire French Tour
"Pans on Fire" is a 23-piece steelband formed after the 2009 Victorian Bushfires which devastated the town of Marysville, 100km north-east of Melbourne. All of the band members lived in and around Marysville, and all were affected (to varying degrees) by the fire. As a social recovery project, the steelband was formed to give members something else to think about, after so many had lost their homes to the fire.
Over the past 5 years, the band has grown and developed, and played over 65 gigs in Victoria. The story of this journey is captured in a picture-book entitled "The First 5 Years", which may be viewed here.
As another step in the continuing development of the band, a suggestion was made that they could undertake a tour of Southern France, playing a number of concerts in and around Moissac. This suggestion was enthusiastically received by band members, with the result that most committed to participating in the French Tour.
So in 2013, while we were in France, Rita spoke to a number of potential concert venues, with the objective of arranging a tour schedule of about six concerts over a two-week period in late-summer (when band members would be free of commitments at the end of the winter tourism season in Marysville). As part of these discussions, a flyer was produced to describe the band and the nature of the tour.
As a result of these discussions, tentative agreement was reached to perform concerts in Moissac (x2), Montauban, Damazan, Lauzerte and Castelmoron. Flights have now been booked and detailed planning is under way for getting band members and instruments to, from and around Moissac. New tunes are being learnt and rehearsed, including several French numbers.
An additional highlight for 2014, that has arisen from the French Tour of Pans on Fire, will be the conduct of a Fete de Plaisanciers (Boat Rally) in the Port of Moissac on the weekend of Aug 30 to Sept 1. Jointly sponsored by CEP, Noble Marine and Pans on Fire, and with the support of the Moissac Mairie, the Fete will combine boating activities on the River Tarn with cultural events in Moissac (including two concerts by Pans on Fire). It promises to be a grand weekend.
As the French Tour progresses, sights and sounds will be presented on this website.