After months of emails, phone calls using my bad Spanish, and hard work by Avenicio Nunez, the first Panama Trombone Workshop was a terrific success. Mark Kellogg gave a series of masterclasses that were attended by over 100 student and professional trombonists, culminating in a performance in the Teatro Nacional that included solo and chamber works with the trombone front and center.
It's easy for festivals of trombone to turn into self-congratulatory monuments to ego; one of the things I appreciate most about my Panamanian friends is their commitment to community. Avenicio and crew were eager to share their own talents with us in the spirit of learning more and creating more opportunities for Panamanian and American students to learn from each other.
Special thanks to Francisco Delvecchio and Gerardo Pinto for their hospitality and musicianship!