Today we are proud to announce that the PANCH Award 2006 goes to Pat Bernhard.
Pat was born 1960 in Berne. At the age of eleven he started to play the piano and attended classes at the academy of music/conservatory. After his Matura he started to study law, but didn't stay for long: his passion for music was much stronger. He was educated as a music teacher and studied at the Swiss Jazz School in Berne. He played in diverse rock and jazz bands.
1986 he met the pan and became a member and soon musical director of the Berner Ölgesellschaft, one of the first swiss steelbands.
1987 he founded the steelband Pantasia. 6 years later, he planned a more professional approch to playing pan and founded the jazz pan band Holiday For Pan. 1996 this band was invited to play at the Pan Jazz Festival in Trinidad.
In the year 2000 Pat was member of the musical committee for PANCH 2000 - a big steelband, which participated in the world steelband festival in Trinidad and became 6th in the competition. Together with Tamla Batra he had arranged the classical piece "poet and peasant" by Franz von Suppé for this festival.
2004 Pat was chief musical director of PANCH Reloaded - another temporary big band project of PANCH.
Pat was one of the first who used the possibilities of personal computers in teaching music. His arrangements always came with an audio recording, so everyone who was not so proficient in reading sheet music could follow. With his own company Pan Music, he arranges and sells songs for steelbands and produces music for dramas.
He teaches several steelbands and is head and initiator of the kids- ans youths-steelband in Spiez where he works as a music teacher.
Along the way, Pat is also creator of this wonderful PANCH homepage - as to be expected another piece of art.