Music City Legend Presents New Field Commander

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Music City Legend Drum and Bugle Corps is pleased to announce that Ashley Nilles, 21, of Murfreesboro, Tennessee, has been selected as the corps’ new Field Commander for the 2008 season. A French horn/mellophone student at Cumberland University in Lebanon Tennessee, the corps’ primary rehearsal site, Miss Nilles is a senior music major and a member of the university’s brass quintet. She is a graduate of Sycamore High School in Pleasantville, Tennessee, where she was drum major of the marching band.

She is also active in her church musical programs and with various other local performing groups. This is her first experience with the competitive drum and bugle corps activity.

Nilles ascended the conductor’s podium after Matthew Dudek, of Hixson, Tennessee, stepped down from the post following the 2007 season. Dudek, a fan favorite, was formerly drum major for the Rochester (NY) Patriots. As the corps’ first drum major, Dudek had been “the public face” of Music City Legend since its first public performances in 2004. Dudek remains with the corps as a member of the brass section. His wife, Ali, marches in the corps’ colorguard.

MCL Program Director Joe Murphy, commented “Ashley is an excellent musician, leader and conductor. She is a dynamic young lady and possesses the drive and passion to excel. Ashley is a winner in every respect of the word and I’m elated that she is on the podium leading the corps this year.” Miss Nilles will be one of a growing number of female drum majors and field commanders in the Drum Corps Associates (DCA) all-age drum corps circuit.

Dudek is enthusiastic about his own return to the baritone line and about Nilles’ conducting and overall handling of the corps. "Ashley is highly capable of taking the reins and running the show with poise, confidence, and dedication. She has already made the transition a smooth one for the corps and is developing into a solid leader. I’m having a great time on the field and love marching in the line."

Music City Legend, based in Nashville, completed its most successful season last year with an 11th place performance in Open Class at the DCA World Championships, achieving its highest score and placement ever at that event. The corps kicks off its 2008 competitive season on Tuesday evening, July 1st, at a Drum Corps International (DCI) sanctioned contest in Richmond, Kentucky.

Further information is available on the corps’ web site at

Posted by on Wednesday, June 18th, 2008. Filed under DCA News.