The Barrels to Beethoven Exhibit, is an interactive, multimedia exhibit, curated by Leigh Solomon Pugliano, celebrating the past 30+ years of steelpan development in Pittsburgh. The exhibit centers around her father Phil Solomon, a world renown steelpan builder, tuner and player who brought the steelpan to Pittsburgh in 1984 after migrating from Guyana, South America. The exhibit provides audiences with the opportunity to see first-hand, how the instrument is made, tuned and played as well as its development over the past 3 decades in Pittsburgh. The exhibit opened on November 22, 2014. Barrels to Beethoven Exhibit is a traveling program that can be brought to your school or organization for a short or extended period of time.
Barrels to Beethoven Opening Reception,
November 22, 2014
The Full Review…
The grace of St. Cecilia, the patron saint of musicians, was definitely upon the room at Cox Contemporary on the evening of November 22, 2014. On this St. Cecilia Day, “Barrels to Beethoven” an exhibit celebrating the 30th anniversary of Phil Solomon and Steelpan in Pittsburgh debuted. The evening included a special performance from Soundwaves Youth Steelband, caribbean music by dj illeso, food from Ten Penny and Taglio and surprise desserts from Brusters which recently opened a location in Georgetown, Guyana. Guests, who included past students, band directors, fans and family, spoke the same sentiment… “this room is filled with wonderful memories and insights and this evening feels so amazing.”
Leigh Solomon Pugliano curated this exhibit about her father and family because she believes this was a story that needed to be told and celebrated. Phil Solomon and the steelpan found the perfect home in Pittsburgh, the perfect combination of manufacturing/ maker, meets the arts.
Solomon arrived in Pittsburgh in 1984. He was a famous steelpan builder, tuner and player in Guyana but did not think he could continue his craft here. After a few months Solomon was building pans and performing throughout the city. Over the past few decades Solomon has vastly improved the pan making process and the quality of the instruments. He has performed throughout the U.S. and started hundreds of steelpan programs across the country. He’s done it all from Pittsburgh, with pride!