Nearly two months after Dr. Anthony Achong's thorough dismissal of the PANArt stolen legacy and their claim of being the "inventors" of the Hang/handpan, Felix Rohner has finally mustered up the courage to break his public silence on the issue.
As it has already been proven without a shadow of a doubt that Felix Rohner has severe credibility issues where the steelpan instrument is concerned, it is not surprising to see that Felix Rohner has yet again thrown whatever remains of his tattered credibility into question.
But before we proceed onto the meat of the present matter, it would be nice if Felix Rohner could clear up a major glaring discrepancy regarding his claims of being the "first to build a Steelpan in Switzerland".
The Official PANArt RESPONSE to Dr. Anthony Achong
Has Michael Paschko been terminated or demoted at the very least? Where he was once so very vocal in trying to disprove KaribPAN with his penchant for Germanic gibberish dressed up as expert opinion, since Dr. Achong tore into him and exposed him as a steelpan charlatan that he is, he has been noticeably quiet. To say the least, Felix Rohner has personally responded in spite of his admission to us through private emails that he does not make statements via social media. Subsequently Felix has apparently completely left Michael Paschko to ride the bench on this one and sit this match out for now. I do not blame Felix for this as Michael Paschko is a parrot who admits that he learned everything he knows about the the steelpan from Felix and Sabine. With the track records of these two Swiss peas in a stolen pod, it is no wonder that Michael Paschko is severely deluded where the steelpan is concerned.
FelixRohner's response in it's entirety is as follows:
Before we start to discuss together publicly I would like to clear a misunderstanding. You said in your article that you are upset having read that I wrote Trinidadian people had lost their roots. I don' t know where I wrote this sentence. It is a fact that PANArt got a visit in 1995 from Sister Montrichard Ruth, chairman of the SERVOL Project which got large financial support by Helvetas Switzerland. She spoke about the problems they have to get jobs for young Trinidadians. We listened carefully to her when she told us about the cut roots of those people who were forced to leave Africa and sold us slaves.
Years before this important visit I found this picture in "Voices from the Hills", the famous book written by Anthony Neil.
I am the seventh of a eight children family which changed more than 12 times its home , each time leaving behind friends, songs, landscapes... Maybe I got the hammer job to heal some wounds, to create sound sculptures which can help to go through a maturing
process, to live with air roots, to enjoy the moment!
Anthony, I told to people many times in tuner life that the slaves lost a cultural treasure and in Trinidad they found recognition, respect and identity in the art form pan.
I didn' t say the Trinidadian people! I know that Trinidad is a multicultural society with a strong identity.
Anthony, I hope you will have the opportunity to play one of our sculptures! You organized the ICSTS 2000 ( 1st International Conference on Science and Technology) and invited us to talk about our studies and to show our work. Some of these instruments are still in Trinidad. And one of the first Hang you will find it in the house of Boogsie Sharp.
Tuner at PANArt Switzerland
Yet More Propaganda-Filled Lies From Felix Rohner
If there is one art that Felix Rohner is definitely skilled in, it is the art of propaganda dissemination. While the first thing that Felix Rohner claims in his response is that there is a misunderstanding as he "never wrote that the people of Trinidad had lost their roots", although he did not write this explicitly, he said it in his documentary at the 23:30 mark. For skeptical readers, please view the documentary for proof that Felix was referring to the people of Trinidad when he made this statement, which Dr. Achong admitted upset him when he became aware of it through our blog.
However, in it's totalilty, Felix addressed none of the other main issues that Dr. Achong mentioned, such as the fact that the hang in it's present form, complete with resonators and played by hand were witnessed by him personally in Trinidad decades ago when the pan was still developing. Also unaddressed by Felix is the fact that Dr. Achong stated that the resonator is basically a flawed steelpan device as pans with resonators can never essentially be tuned properly.
Knowing what we do about Felix through our past correspondence with him, it is likely that he has also no doubt engaged Dr. Achong in further discussions about this matter through private conversations, and this weak, watered down response of his which fails in every way to address the main issues of Dr. Achong's historic article appear to be a mere public face saving measure on his part, inept as it may be. This utter failure of Felix Rohner and PANART to even remotely attempt to defend their indefensible stolen legacy speaks volumes about the contempt that PANART has for the hang/ handpan buying public at large who bought into the lies that were sold to them about the hang being a unique Swiss instrument.