DCW On-Line: Pasadena Review

| |

AmericaFest of fizzle?

July 4th festivities called “AmericaFest” at the Rose Bowl in Pasadena, CA, seemed like a great idea. I was excited. Drum corps, fireworks, good food, good drinks and several thousand people, perfect!

Well . . . maybe not for drum corps fans.

This show brought out some the best of Los Angeles — Congressmen, television personalities, movie stars, lots of military veterans and even DCI Executive Director Dan Acheson and DCI’s Field Pass commentator, Dan Potter.

Things started off well when the Mandarins took the field. They performed a really good show and received a, eh . . . OK response from the crowd. But I started to notice that the crowd’s attention span became that of a five-year-old and the bigger the corps, the louder and more rowdy they became.

Now mind you, my vantage point was on the 50-yard line literally on the field and as I looked up to a sea of people, you could actually tell who the drum corps fans were . . . they responded to the corps’ shows, but surrounding them were thousands of families, little children, babies and the ever-so-loud, guys who had waaaaay too much to drink.

Well, unfortunately those people ignored the corps, barely clapped and shouted obscenities to the corps during their performances.

I was hoping that things would eventually calm down and the corps would get the respect that they deserved. Not quite. As a matter of fact, pretty much throughout all of the performances — and especially the entire performance of the Bluecoats — the entire stadium (minus the drum corps fans) started screaming so loud even I could barely hear the corps, even being on the field.

So, I turned around and the entire crowd was screaming, doing the wave and totally ignoring the corps as if they were not even there. I looked at some of the staff of the Bluecoats standing next to me and you could tell they were . . . .let’s just say, a little upset, which I don’t blame them for one bit.

The kids in the corps were actually looking at each other in awe as they couldn’t believe what they were seeing. These corps traveled thousands of miles to compete, thousands of hours practicing in the blazing hot sun and deserve to go to a show that respects their talents, not to just be part of a giant 4th of July spectacle.

We all know that DCI’s Dan Acheson worked very hard to help put this show on and to get these kids here to perform for the people of Los Angeles and, knowing Dan, he probably worked day and night to pull off the drum corps portion of the show alone.

Just to let you know, DCI did NOT put on this show. They were just part of the entertainment.

Let’s hope that no drum corps ever again has to be the butt of a party of thousands. As a fellow Angelino, I would like to apologize for the disrespect the corps received during a performance in this otherwise great city!

You may discuss this review on the DCP Forums. We’d love to hear your feedback.

Publisher’s Note:
These articles are provided to Drum Corps Planet from Drum Corps World staff members who regularly contribute show reports and feature material for the monthly newspaper. The content is exclusive to Drum Corps Planet and will not appear in issues of DCW. For information about subscribing or to learn about the historic DVDs and CDs that are available, visit the Web site — www.drumcorpsworld.com."

The Madison, WI-based Drum Corps World has been published continously since October 1971 — 37 years of service! The tabloid newspaper is mailed monthly and contains articles on competitions and concerts, worldwide event calendars, scores, photography, features, regular columns and advertising from the companies that support the publication and the activity. Our staff of 75 writers and 12 photographers have extensive experience and many have been with us for 10 years or more. In addition, you will also find historic material in the store including: 136 historic CDs originally recorded between 1950 and 1980, vintage DVD content, videotapes, record albums, history books, back issues of DCW and feature articles from past issues posted on the front page twice each week.

Visit www.drumcorpsworld.com. For more information, call toll free 1-800-554-9630.

Posted by on Wednesday, July 8th, 2009. Filed under DCW On-Line.