Now you have a steelpan booking. What do you need to do to ensure everything goes as smoothly as possible? Ms Panness says.... 

Create a checklist of everything you think you will need. Experience will tell you that you cannot prepare for every eventuality but a lack of preparation will undoubtedly lead to things going wrong or a poor performance.

Bookings (also called gigs) are usually one-off performances and therefore you will need to present yourself as best as possible because this can lead to more bookings.

Ms Panness has created a checklist that you might find useful. Not all of these items will apply as it will depend on the event and the format of your steelband.

The band 

  • All members have been notified
  • Uniform (outfits)
  • Permission slips
  • Transportation for pans
  • Transportation for players
  • Spare sticks/stands/pan ties or string
  • Business cards
  • Music stands and music stand lights

Booking info

  • Written confirmation of the booking
  • Name and address of the venue
  • Contact number for the venue
  • Name of contact for the venue
  • Directions to the venue
  • Check the traffic reports
  • Arrival time
  • Playing times
  • The repertoire
  • Refreshments
  • Changing rooms
  • The available space to perform
  • Sound check


  • PA equipment (public-address system)
  • Lighting 
  • Gazebo
  • Limbo sticks
  • CDs for sale
  • Video of the performance
  • If sunny: cap, sunglasses, sun block if skin is sensitive, drinks and snacks
  • If cold: warm coat, gloves, hoody or sweater

Before playing get plenty of rest. It is usually not a good idea to eat just before you perform. Finally, as a musician the booking is partly about the music. If you are not enjoying what you are playing, it's likely that your audience would not be either.