Buccaneers Announce Team for 2008
The three-time defending Drum Corps Associates world champion Reading Buccaneers Drum & Bugle Corps announced today the designers and caption heads that will lead the design and instructional staff for the corps’ 2008 season.
“We’re very excited to be announcing such a talented, experienced and passionate team of designers and instructors for 2008,” said Buccaneers Staff Coordinator Carl Ruocco. “Our members will be taught by some of the finest designers and teachers in the activity. In addition to their many years of drum corps experience, they’ve worked well together with the Buccaneers. We’re working hard on putting together another ‘total team’ production that will showcase what the Buccaneers do best: entertainment, innovation, and excellence in every caption. This staff has what it takes to deliver a first-class experience for our members and fans alike.”
JAY BOCOOK joins the Buccaneers as Brass Arranger. A celebrated composer and arranger, Bocook is currently Director of Athletic Bands at Furman University in Greenville, South Carolina, where he previously served as Director of Bands. He holds a Bachelor of Music degree from Furman and a Master of Music from Northeast Louisiana University. He has written for many ensembles, including school bands at all levels and the United States Marine Band, as well as the nine-time Drum Corps International world champion Cadets, where he currently serves as Brass Arranger.
GINO CIPRIANI returns to the Buccaneers as Brass Caption Head. From 1990 to 1999, he was a brass instructor for the eleven-time DCI world champion Blue Devils. He served the Cadets as Brass Caption Head in 2000 and 2001, and held the same post for the Magic of Orlando in 2002 and 2003. He held that post for the six-time DCI world champion Santa Clara Vanguard in 2004 and returned to the Cadets as Brass Caption Supervisor in 2005, 2006 and 2007. His DCA resume includes work with the Syracuse Brigadiers and Hawthorne Caballeros. He joined the Buccaneers brass staff in 2007, where he led the corps to a brass caption title.
MIKE BRITCHER returns to the brass staff for his fourth consecutive season, this year as Assistant Brass Caption Head. Currently Director of Athletic Bands at Temple University, Britcher headed the corps’ trumpet program in 2006 and 2007, and was a consultant in 2005. He has been a marching member of the Crossmen and is the former band director of the award-winning Phoenixville High School band.
RICH HAMMOND returns as Percussion Arranger and Caption Head, in addition to his role as Program Coordinator. He brings a wealth of talent, passion and experience to this year’s corps. A graduate of the Baltimore School for the Arts, Hammond attended the University of the Arts and the Peabody Conservatory of Music. He has been a marching member of the Hamilton Knights, the Reading Buccaneers and the Crossmen. In addition, he has performed with the National Symphony Orchestra and the Baltimore Symphony Orchestra. His drum corps teaching posts have included work with the Crossmen, the Glassmen and the Reading Buccaneers, where he has produced three world championship percussion programs. In addition to his work with the Buccaneers, since 2006 Rich has been Arranger and Director of Percussion Education for DCI’s Jersey Surf, where he led the Surf to a 2007 Division II percussion title. In addition to his work in drum corps, Hammond worked with the WGI world champion Hatboro-Horsham and the USSBA Group 6 Open Champion North Penn Marching Knights, where he is Director of Percussion.
Joining Hammond at the helm of the Buccaneers’ percussion program is CHRIS FEIST, who reprises his role as Battery Coordinator. Chris has been a marching member of the Buccaneers and the Crossmen. From 1983 to 1988 he served as percussion caption head for the Conrad Weiser High School Marching Band, and from 1994 to 1999 served the Governor Mifflin High School Marching Band in a variety of roles, including percussion arranger, caption head and staff coordinator. His drum corps teaching experience includes the Crossmen and the Buccaneers, where he has taught since 2001. In addition, Feist has been a percussion judge for both the indoor and outdoor programs of Cavalcade of Bands and for the Mid-Atlantic Percussion Society.
STEVE VINCENT brings a wealth of talent and experience to his role as Color Guard Designer and Caption Head. Steve’s marching experience includes five years with the Westshoremen, five years with the Sunrisers and eight years with the Buccaneers, as well as three years with the Threshold and Black Watch indoor guards. He has also marched at Millersville University and North Penn High School, where he was drum major. His teaching credentials are equally considerable: Vincent has taught guard at the Buccaneers, Westshoremen and Sunrisers for seven years. He has taught the Souderton High School indoor guard for six years, Allentown’s The Guard for ten years. He also instructs the West Chester University color guard and has thirteen years experience teaching guard at Downingtown and Souderton High Schools.
Returning to the Buccaneers as Visual Designer and Caption Head is BOBBY JONES. Jones first joined the Buccaneers staff in 2005, where he produced a world championship visual program. In addition to his work with the Buccaneers, Jones writes and teaches for many high schools in the mid-Atlantic region and has written and taught for the Crossmen, Hawthorne Caballeros and Jersey Surf. A testament to his impact and talent, he was named 2005 Buccaneers Staff Member of the Year by members of the corps.
“This is an exceptional team,” said Corps Director James C. Gruber. “All of us in the Buccaneers administration are looking forward to seeing what this staff has in store for 2008. We welcome Jay to the Buccaneers and welcome Bobby back. It’s going to be another fantastic year to be a Buccaneer! As we jump into 2008, we also reflect on the exceptional talent, passion and energy that Dan McGrogan, Eric Kitchenman and Greg King brought to the Buccaneers over the past several seasons. They have been invaluable members of our staff and we thank them for their dedicated service to our organization and members.”
On Sunday, November, 25, 2007, the Buccaneers will host Membership Day 2008, at Twin Valley High School, Elverson, PA. Registration begins at 11:00. All persons interested in learning more about the Reading Buccaneers and being part of the 2008 corps are invited to attend. Please visit the corps’ web site at www.readingbuccaneers.org for more information.
Founded in 1957, the Buccaneers are a non-profit, education-oriented musical organization. The Buccaneers are a charter member of Drum Corps Associates and won the first-ever DCA world championships in 1965. Additional titles followed in 1968, 1979, 1980 and, most recently, in 2005, 2006 and 2007 — all three undefeated championship seasons.
The Buccaneers are sponsored in part by Behler-Hein American Legion Post 637, Hamburg, Pennsylvania, and Roy A. Master American Legion Post 217, Topton, Pennsylvania
For more information, visit www.readingbuccaneers.org