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2018 CARNIVAL CultureMix Summer Guide - 2018

Carnivals Steel Pans Costumes Workshops Culture Flags

Music Art Festivals Percussion Concerts Dance

Learn to play in a Steel Band with

RASPO Steel Orchestra

Image: Salvo Toscano

Reading College - Art Block 1 Kings Road, Reading, Berkshire RG1 4HJ Free parking. Instruments provided.


0118 955 4889 / 07973 251919
 Follow: RASPOUK



For beginners and improvers
 All ages and abilities welcome.


Learn to play steel pan music and join 
 Reading All Steel Percussion Orchestra
 for performances at CARNIVALS, FESTIVALS, SHOWCASE EVENTS and MUCH MORE… CultureMix Arts is a not for profit company specialising in music 
 and arts education, entertainment, experiences and employment.

Free classes for all ages. Beginners welcome

Welcome I am delighted to present CultureMix events and activities for 2018 as we celebrate RASPO Steel Orchestra’s 21st anniversary and join Arts Council England as a National Portfolio Organisation. Our brand new programme highlights our aspirations for the future of Carnival Arts, Music and Culture in the region. With a refreshed Board, a super team and our Reading College location as a Linked Learning Company we bring you The Peace and Love Concerts with IYA Rebels, The Steel Band Festival at The Hexagon and much more. For this special year we have invited Afoxé percussionists Ylê De Egbá live and direct from NE Brazil to join RASPO for the CultureMix Carnival of the World in Reading and at London’s Notting Hill Carnival. Aspiring pan players past and present are invited to join RASPO and compete in the National UK Steelband Championship. Thank you for your support as CultureMix continues to thrive and grow bringing the best Carnival music art and dance experiences for you to enjoy. Mary Genis FRSA Artistic Director

Highlights for 2018


Brazilian percussionists summer visit to Reading

CultureMix joins Arts Council England National Portfolio

Brazilian Afoxé group Ylê De Egbá will join RASPO in August for the CultureMix Carnival of the World and Notting Hill Carnival. The group will lead workshops in costumes, percussion and dance. For more info on this unmissable opportunity and to register your interest: 0118 955 4889 or

CultureMix Arts Ltd has been awarded Arts Council England's National Portfolio Organisation (ACE NPO) status with four years of investment. ACE invests in pioneering and inventive arts organisations who will make a positive difference and represent the best of art and culture in the world. CultureMix, Readipop and the Reading Museum and MERL partnership are the first Reading organisations to join the prestigious portfolio of 831.

RASPO to compete in UK National Steel Band Championships In August RASPO is taking part in the 2018 London Notting Hill Carnival UK Panorama National Steelband Championship and a float performance as part of the famous street procession. Steel bands players, percussionists, and pan players past and present are invited to join RASPO for the Panorama Tasters on Thursday 24 & 31 May 5-8pm at The CultureMix Music Centre in Art Block 1 at Reading College, Kings Road RG1 4HJ. Book tickets via Eventbrite ‘RASPO Reunion’. All welcome.

Who’s who at CultureMix

Meet the Team

CultureMix is a not for profit company launching into 2018 with a strong vision for Carnival Music and Arts in the South East. Endorsed by a thriving partnership with Activate Learning at Reading College, CultureMix benefits from Arts Council England investment through The Elevate fund and as a National Portfolio Organisation.

Founding director Mary Genis established the organisation as a company limited by guarantee in 2003 to increase employment opportunities. CultureMix now has a workforce strengthened by new full time Business and Administration Manager Nathifa Jordan. Paul Jr Watson facilitates the creative development of young talent, Dani Richardson arranges for the ensembles, Jamah Lynam is the junior tutor and Steve Taylor manages transport.

On the Board of Directors are Chair Pax Nindi, the CEO of Global Carnival Centre. Vice chair Matthew Phillip, Director at the Tabernacle and Mangrove Steel Band Manager. Michelle Genis is a music and language educator. Pam Warren is a public speaker, a change & disruption expert and the author of ‘Lady in the Mask’. Louie Genis is a lyricist, a live mix artist, a DJ and a music producer. Ailsa Harris is Head of the Apprenticeship Standards at the Department for Education.

Contact us: 0118 955 4889

Working together

Our Partners CultureMix works alongside other organisations as partners to strengthen the mutual benefits of shared projects and activities. Activate Learning is a pioneering education group comprising of secondary, further and higher education, apprenticeships and business training. Based at Reading College CultureMix is in partnership as a Linked Learning Company and Work Experience provider (WEX) offering industry access to music students. Reading Refocus is a charity which aims to divert young people from anti-social activities, attain a good education and a happy worthwhile life through mentoring and counselling. The CultureMix Refocus partnership enables business and creative development for young people at risk. Realtime Video specialises in participatory engagement and communication, using workshops, projects, training, production and screenings to make creative digital technology available for everyone. The CultureMix Real Time partnership offers joint peerled media projects for young people.

Work Experience Our work experience programme caters for individual ambitions providing a tailored p a t h way t o s u c c e s s fu l e m p l o y m e n t i n administration, project management, music tutoring and social networking. With careers advice and access to a real life music and arts industry young people are supported to gain the skills and experience to achieve their ambitions. Interested in training and work experience with CultureMix? Contact us now! Above image by Salvo Toscano Artwork by CultureMix volunteer Mayah Bentley-Holder (right).

For more info contact 0118 955 4889

Inspire and Uplift

Guest Artistes CultureMix works with a diverse range of professional animateurs who inspire our artists as role models, and enrich the experience of orchestra.

Jason Yarde

Euan Leslee

Jason Yarde is an award winning composer, arranger, producer, musical

A talented award winning drummer originally from Dumfries in Scotland Euan won the UK Young Drummer of the Year in 2015 and a scholarship at the Berklee College of Music. He was a Semi Finalist in BBC4’s Young Jazz Musician Of The Year 2014 and the Young Scottish Jazz Musician 2013

director and saxophonist who creates music that is powerful, spiritual and formidable. He composes across a variety of styles including jazz, calypso classical, hip-hop, R&B, reggae and soul. He has worked with Jazz Jamaica All Stars, The London Symphony Orchestra and the BBC Concert Orchestra. In 2016 Jason produced a new composition for RASPO’s third album. For 2018 he continues to develop new and original compositions with RASPO combining jazz saxophone and steel percussion.

He now travels around the world playing at places like The One Love Reggae Festival in the UK and The Country Festival in New York. In August Euan joins RASPO as the drummer to compete in the 2018 Notting Hill Carnival National Panorama Steelband Championships.

A selection of featured artists

Featured Junior Watson Junior is a singer songwriter and founder of roots reggae band IYA Rebels who recently released their first album ‘Nadah’. As guest vocalist with Mighty Dub Generators he played at Glastonbury and appeared at The Royal Albert Hall with RASPO. He is also a member of Stelphonic Steel Ensemble. #iyarebel

Childish aka Jamah Lynam Inspired by the sound of the steel pan afro wave artist ‘Childish’ aka Jamah Lynam has turned his passion for culture into a music career inspired by the likes of J Hus and Lotto Boyzz. Jamah is fulfilling his dream with regular live appearances, videos and popular EP releases. Soundcloud iam_childish

To Book call:

0118 955 4889

CultureMix is proud to support

Talent RASPO Ensemble A RASPO Ensemble can be tailor made to suit any setting. Weddings, parties, themed events and corporate functions are all catered for by our professional musicians. Choose from a duo, trio, quartet or a popular six piece to entertain with the sounds of the Caribbean. Contact our friendly Booking Hotline on 0118 955 4889 with your enquiry.

Lou Mulato Mulato Music is the portal for all mixes from Lou Mulato aka Louie G. He is a lyricist, DJ, rapper and live mix artist bringing the hip hop to UK reggae, funk, jazz and soul. He has played at Shepherds Bush Empire and Brixton Academy mixing vinyl in Barcelona, Los Angeles and New York City. #mulatomusic

To Book email:

International Project

Nations of Culture INTRODUCTION For 2018 CultureMix presents Nations of Culture a Brazilian themed project featuring Afoxé Afro-Brazilian percussion group Ylê De Egbá for CultureMix Carnival of the World in Reading and at Notting Hill Carnival.

HOW IT STARTED In 2006 CultureMix director Mary Genis visited Pernambuco in NE Brazil to study carnival percussion and costume with Dito D’Oxossi and Ylê De Egbá. Armed with a steel pan Mary worked in the hillside community of Alto José do Pinho to learn typical Afro Brazilian rhythms in exchange for calypso music workshops. The trip culminated in collaboration performances introducing steel pan to Recife and Olinda Carnival.

Inspired by the trip Mary returned to the UK bringing many of the musical and philosophical influences to her work with RASPO Steel Orchestra. The legacy left by the visit has seen Ylê De Egbá incorporate steel pan into their performances.

- Brazil ABOUT YLÊ DE EGBÁ Afoxé Ylê de Egbá is a group that promotes Afro Pernambuco culture to preserve the Yoruba traditions and history of Black people brought as slaves from Nigeria to NE Brazil. Led by master percussionist Dito D’Oxossi Ylê De Egbá practice Candomblé, believing in one powerful God Oludumaré served by Orixas Shango, Oshun and Yansa. Music, dance and costume are important elements of the traditional rituals.


0118 955 4889

Ylê De Egbá will lead free August workshops in percussion, costume making and dance. To experience authentic traditional Afro Brazilian culture live and direct sign up now! Book FREE Workshops with Ylê De Egbá:

About Reading’s award winning steel band

RASPO Steel Orchestra INTRODUCTION RASPO Steel Orchestra is an award winning steel band providing entertainment for events, parties, carnivals and festivals at home and abroad. RASPO has performed at The Royal Albert Hall, WOMAD festival, the London 2012 Olympics, live on BBC and ITV, and at Notting Hill Carnival.

HOW IT STARTED RASPO started as a local community carnival project and formed in 1997. Set up with support from Arts Council England's New Audiences Programme, Mangrove Steel Band provided the musical instruments and tutors. CultureMix Arts coordinated the project led by Artistic Director Mary Genis. RASPO is now well established as one of the UK’s

leading steel orchestras and welcomes all ages and abilities to its year round workshops and activities. The name – Reading All Steel Percussion Orchestra – honours TASPO - Trinidad All Steel Percussion Orchestra, first heard in the UK at the 1951 Festival of Britain. With three CD’s and numerous awards RASPO’s capacity for dynamic large scale orchestral concerts and performances continues to flourish.

0118 955 4889 / 07973 251919

National Steelband Championships

Panorama UK ABOUT PANORAMA Panorama is a national steel band championship established in Trinidad in the Caribbean in 1963. Following the impact of TASPO's performance premier in 1951, pioneers led the way for the steel pan to make an important and respected contribution to British culture through performances and schools music education.

learn a 10 minute arrangement of a calypso in a bid for the coveted title ‘Champions of Steel’.

RASPO REUNION To celebrate RASPO’s 21st anniversary the orchestra is competing in the 2018 National Panorama Steelband Championships which kicks off Notting Hill Carnival on Sat 25 August at Horniman’s Pleasance Park W10.

In the UK the first Panorama took place in 1978 as a pre-curser to Notting Hill Carnival. Now steel bands from UK towns and cities rehearse daily for many weeks to

You are invited to join RASPO and learn a calypso arrangement to perform at Panorama. The Panorama taster session is on Thursday 24 May 6-8pm. Contact or call 0118 955 4889. Images by Pan Podium

Panorama Taster Thurs 24 May 6-8pm Art Block 1 - Music @ Reading College

Steel Pans


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Accessories CultureMix offers the complete bespoke steel pan supply service from purchasing your instruments, stands, cases and sticks to racking for storage, advice and demonstrations. Steel pans are hand crafted to order by some of the world’s best pan makers and tuners in the UK and Trinidad - the birthplace of the steel pan. They are finished in chrome or painted in a colour of your choice. Tuning and maintenance services help keep your instruments in tip top condition. With good care and annual tuning steel pans will last for decades. From enquiry to delivery of your order our friendly team of specialists will expertly guide you though each step ensuring a positive and hassle free steel pan purchase experience. For more information on the packages we offer please contact us. Further details on the range of instruments and accessories available can be found on our website.

Call 0118 955 4889 or 07973 251919

CultureMix Education & Team Building

Music Workshops CultureMix is the leading company for steel pan music workshops in schools, community team building, and corporate functions and private parties. Schools. We facilitate weekly curriculum music lessons and clubs for gifted and talented groups. If you don't have steel pans we offer whole school taster days, talks, demonstrations and training, with instruments and tutors provided. Workshops and lessons are fun packed and enriching where participants learn a musical instrument in a group without the need of any prior experience. Children who learn steel pan gain confidence enabling them to perform live. Team Building will transform your staff into a fully functioning steel percussion orchestra at our team building workshops tailor made to suit your requirements and for any number of delegates. Our tutors are a dynamic teaching team trained to the highest standards with regularly updated Child Protection and Disclosure and Barring Services (DBS) certificates. Contact us now to make an enquiry about workshops, to join the Schools Steel Band Association for the South East and find out more about the annual Steel Band Festival.


Dates for your Diary


To Book: 0118 955 4889 Mon, Tues & Thurs May-Aug 5-9pm

PANORAMA REHEARSALS Art Block 1 Music Reading College RASPO rehearsals for Panorama launch with two introductory Taster Sessions on Thursday 24 & 31 May 5-8pm Take part in the National Steelband Competition FREE Sat 23 & 30 June 11am - 3pm

PARADE PARAPHERNALIA C100 Fashion Reading College Every Tuesday April-June 5-7pm

STEEL BAND BOOTCAMP Art Block 1 Music Reading College Learn to play steel pan with RASPO. For beginners and improvers. FREE Saturdays 10am-12pm 14, 21, 28 April 5, 12, 19 May


Design and make fabulous flags, parasols and headdresses for carnival. FREE Fri 10 & Sat 11 Aug 12-2, 3-5pm


Art Block 1 Music Reading College Master percussionist Dito D’Oxossi presents an interactive Afoxé workshop. FREE Fri 10 & Sat 11 Aug 12-2, 3-5pm

Art Block 1 Music Reading College Reading College Saturday morning Carnival Steel Band music course for ages 13-16. £55 for 6 sessions 0800 371 434


Tues 29 & Thurs 31 May 3.30-4.30pm



Children’s Festival steel band music workshops for 7-11yrs FREE 14, 21, 25 June 5.30-8pm

MUSIC WITH JASON YARDE Art Block 1 Music Reading College Composer and jazz saxophonist Jason Yarde will create original music with RASPO. FREE

C100 Fashion Reading College Join our artists in residence Ylê De Egbá to make traditional costumes. FREE.

T: 0118 955 4889 E: W:

Get tickets


Ticket Info: 0118 955 4889

SAT 7 APRIL 8-10.30pm

PEACE & LOVE CONCERT PURPLE TURTLE, Gun St Reading Roots reggae band IYA Rebels will launch their 1st CD at this free showcase event. Childish and Lou Mulato support. FREE Tickets:

SUN 19 AUG 12-6pm

CARNIVAL OF THE WORLD BROAD STREET Reading CultureMix Carnival of the World and the Broad Street Parade return to Reading for a colourful celebration of diversity. FREE SAT 25 AUG 6-10pm


PANORAMA TASTERS ART BLOCK 1 Reading College Join RASPO for the first of our free Panorama taster sessions and a RASPO Reunion welcome. FREE 0118 955 4889 / 07973 251919

NOTTING HILL London RASPO will enter the UK Steel band competition with a large orchestra and Afro Brazilian percussion. FREE

MON 28 MAY 12-7pm

READING CARNIVAL PROSPECT PARK West Reading The RASPO music workshop marquee will be at Reading Carnival 41st event. Info: FRI 15 JUNE 6.30-8.30pm

STEEL BAND FESTIVAL THE HEXAGON THEATRE Reading A family concert with a 100 piece children’s steel orchestra and a choir of 90 showcase premier of new work ‘Story of Steel Pan’. Tickets: 0118 960 6060 Box Office:

SUN 26 & MON 27 AUG 12-7pm

NOTTING HILL CARNIVAL NOTTING HILL London Our finale event is performing at London’s famous street carnival parade of floats to hundreds of thousands. FREE @yledeegba

Be part of our activities and events

Get Involved Artists, performers, events assistants, drivers and volunteers are always needed to get involved with our events. For more info please contact Nathifa 0118 955 4889.

Acknowledgements Disclaimer: Information in this programme is correct at time of press. Please check the website before booking tickets for any of our event or workshops. Images: Salvo Toscano, Wokingham & East Berkshire Camera Club, Tina Panting, Dave Cole, Wilf Springer, Real Time Video, Pan Podium, CultureMix Arts. Cover headdress design by Melissa Simon-Hartman. Design and layout: Š CultureMix Arts 2018

How to find us

Contact Us Famous for it’s iconic Black History Mural (above) in the Royal County of Berkshire, Reading is the place for culture, music, creativity, carnivals, festivals and diversity.

CultureMix Carnival 2018 Events

of the


Reading All Steel Percussion Orchestra

21st Anniversary

RASPO Panorama Tasters

Thursday 24 & 31 May

Carnival workshops

Steel pan, costume, dance & percussion May-August

Jason Yarde

Jazz Saxophonist & Composer June

Ylê De Egbá (Brazil)

Afoxé Afro-Percussion August

CultureMix Carnival of the World

Broad Street Parade Reading UK Sunday 19 August

National Steelband Competition

Panorama - UK Steelband Championships London Saturday 25 August

London Notting Hill Carnival Street Procession of Floats Ladbroke Grove Sunday 26 & Monday 27 August

CultureMix Arts Ltd , Reading College - Art Block 1 Music, Kings Rd, Reading RG1 4HJ UK Enquiries: 0118 955 4889 07973 251919 #RASPOUK

CultureMix Carnival Summer Guide 2018  

Our What's On guide provides information on CultureMix Carnival activities and events.

CultureMix Carnival Summer Guide 2018  

Our What's On guide provides information on CultureMix Carnival activities and events.