2009 San Francisco Renegades Open House Report
The San Francisco Renegades Drum & Bugle Corps, the official drum and bugle corps of the city of San Francisco and a seven-time Drum Corps Associates finalist, held their 2009 Open House December 6 and 7. At the initial corps meeting, Music Director Chris Nalls announced the selections for the corps’ 2009 production, entitled “Día de los Muertos.”
In addition to the previously announced selections – Elton John’s moving “Funeral for a Friend,” “The Heat of the Day” by Pat Metheny, and the Latin drum corps favorite “One More Time, Chuck Corea” – Nalls announced two additional pieces: the festive “Faces” by Earth, Wind & Fire, and “Amazing Grace,” a classic piece given a new twist by Renegades brass arranger Key Poulan.
The show will reflect and represent the moods of the Spanish holiday, primarily celebrated in Mexico, that gathers families and friends together to remember those who have passed on and honor their memory.
Each section spent the weekend learning show-related music and work. At the end of the Sunday rehearsal, the full corps gathered for a “show and tell,” with each section performing for the others. The drums played selected warm-ups and show music, the brass line performed “Funeral” and “Amazing Grace,” and the color guard performed nearly two full minutes of work from “Faces.”
While the turnout for the Open House was impressive, Renegades director Greg Gilman said that recruiting new members is still a priority for the corps. “With our lofty goals for the upcoming season, all sections are focused on larger membership,” he said. Gilman said that all sections still have openings, but the sections in more immediate need are snares, sopranos and “a few more guard spots.”
The San Francisco Renegades were founded in 1996 by a small group of people that got together simply for the love of the drum corps activity. The mission of the Renegade organization is to bring an unprecedented awareness and appreciation of the drum corps activity to the public through a comprehensive marketing and financial plan. In 2002, the Renegades became the first California all-age corps to compete at the Drum Corps Associates Championships, becoming both Finalist and Member in its first year. Since then, the Renegades have been finalists every year at the DCA Championships.