Carolina Gold Announces 2011 Show, Staff

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The Carolina Gold Drum and Bugle Corps began in Eastern North Carolina in 2001, after moves from Goldsboro, to Rocky Mount, and then to Burlington. Today, Carolina Gold practices every other weekend at a practice facility in northeast Greensboro, North Carolina.

Carolina Gold is part of “Drum Corps Associates” (DCA) which is a national association of 34 “all-age” Drum Corps across the United States. It is a counterpart to the more well-known, “Drum Corps International” (DCI) which consists of 59 member Corps that are exclusive to young people ages 13-22. Both DCI and DCA Corps travel the country and will perform their annually changing repertoire at stadiums in competition against one another for coveted awards and prizes.

In 2010, Carolina Gold performed at the DCA World Championships and was awarded third place in Class A (Corps with less than 60 wind instruments) Finals competition. This placement was the highest award in Class A in the history of Carolina Gold.

“After our success in 2010, we have decided to take the Corps in a different direction.” said Carolina Gold Program Coordinator, Charles Patton. “The 2011 show will have such a different look and feel to it than anything we have done before.”

The “new-look” Carolina Gold, will perform their 2011 field show entitled “A City Never Sleeps” at stadiums up and down the east coast. This creative tribute to a day in the life of a city dweller is sure to dazzle with design, flair and power.

The show begins in the right state of mind, a “New York State of Mind” by Billy Joel. As we drive into the city we see and hear the traffic and taxis in Robert Sheldon’s “Metroplex”. We celebrate the diversity of the city, and visit “Harlem Nocturne” by Earle Hagan. -To the downtown busy sidewalks and the bustling street corners with “Blue Rondo” by Dave Brubeck. We rub elbows with the visiting country tourists in “Unsquare Dance” also by Dave Brubeck. And finally we celebrate the lights and the city night life in Joe Zawinul’s “Birdland”.

Carolina Gold’s 2011 U.S. Tour

June 18 – “Cabs At The Beach” Maxwell Field. Wildwood, NJ.
July 2 – “Shenandoah Sound” Manassas Park High School. Manassas Park, VA. (unconfirmed)
July 16 – “Drums Along the Suncoast” Land O Lakes High School. Land O Lakes, FL.
July 17 – “Drums Along the Suncoast” Tampa, FL
August 13 – “The Jersey Shore Invitational” Toms River East High School. Toms River, NJ.
August 19 – “Friends & Family Exhibition” Gateway University Park. Greensboro, NC.
August 27 – “Big Sounds In Motion” Albright College Stadium. Reading, PA.
September 1-5 – DCA World Championships – “Rochester Rhinos Stadium”, Rochester, NY.

Carolina Gold Staff

Corps Director: Jessica Zakula
Jessica is in her 2nd year as Corps Director with Carolina Gold and she also marched lead baritone from 2007-2009. She received her Bachelor of Music Education in 2005 from the University of North Carolina at Greensboro and served as the Choral Director at Hoggard High School in 2006, the Music Director at West Pender Middle School from 2006-2007 and the Assistant High School Music Director at Pender High School in 2006.

She has been working with Carolina Bank out of Winston Salem and Greensboro, NC in Retail Banking and Credit Administration since February, 2008. She is also the pianist at New Friendship Baptist Church where she accompanies the Celebration Choir and works with various choral and instrumental solo and ensemble groups and is currently residing in Walkertown, NC where she keeps an ongoing private lessons studio.

Program Coordinator: Charles Patton
Charles is currently the Director of Bands at Southern Alamance High School in Graham, NC. As a North Carolina Teaching Fellow, he received his Bachelor of Music in 2006 and his Master of Arts in Teaching in 2007; both from the University of North Carolina- Chapel Hill. He has consulted and taught for marching groups throughout North Carolina including Green Hope High School, Clayton High School, Garner High School, and Cedar Ridge High School. He was the 2009 Visual Caption Head and 2010 Program Coordinator for Carolina Gold Drum and Bugle Corps.

Charles marched two seasons with The Blue Knights Drum and Bugle Corps in Denver, CO as a euphonium player and Drum Major. He is a member of the North Carolina Music Educators Association and an alumnus of Phi Mu Alpha Sinfonia.

Drill Designer: Mike Gillespie
A Graduate of Jordan High school in Durham, NC, Gillespie performed with DCI’s Carolina Crown Drum and Bugle Corps in 2002 on Trumpet. From 2005 to 2007, he performed with the Cavaliers Drum and Bugle Corps. During the 06-07 season, Mike was a soloist for the Cavaliers. He holds a Bachelors degree in music from Oklahoma University and is currently pursuing his Master of Arts in Teaching at UNC Chapel Hill. Mike is active as a consultant, teacher, and designer throughout North Carolina, working with schools such as Green Hope High School, Wakefield High School, Enloe High School, Southern Alamance High School, and Panther Creek High School.

Battery Arranger: Justin Mabry
Mabry is originally from Roanoke VA, and is currently the percussion caption head and battery arranger for Carolina Gold Drum & Bugle Corps. In 2010, this section won the High Percussion award in Class A at DCA Finals. Justin is currently pursuing his undergraduate degree in Percussion Performance from Mars Hill College under the direction of Dr. Brian Tinkel. He is a private lesson instructor, arranger and clinician for several schools in North Carolina, Kentucky and Virginia as well as an adjudicator for several band circuits. He is currently on staff with “Multiperc” (multiple percussion services) as an instructor and clinician for both the Youth Percussion Ensemble and the Summer Percussion Camp. In addition to being on the staff at Carolina Gold, Justin also serves as a staff member of the Wake Forest Independent Percussion Ensemble for the 2011 season as Battery Coordinator and Snare technician.

Justin has studied under and worked with several of percussion’s biggest icons; including Dr. Brian Tinkel, Dr. Brian Mason, Ian Hale, Tyler Dempsey, Allen Joanis, Teddy Holcomb, Chris Romanowski, and Eric Miller.

As a performer, he performs with the Johnson City Symphony Orchestra and also participates in the Mars Hill College’s marching band, percussion ensemble, marimba band, jazz band, and wind symphony. He has participated in Drum Corps International as a member of the Teal Sound Drum and Bugle Corps in 2004 that received the high percussion trophy. He was also a member of DCI’s Carolina Crown Drum and Bugle Corps in 2005 and 2006 and was also a member of Winter Guard International’s Odyssey Percussion Theater in 2008.

Brass Arranger: Gene O’Brien
A UMASS Alum, Gene has worked with Drum Corps and in public education for a total of over 20 years. Working in both DCI and DCA, he has been a part of many top DCI organizations such as the Spartans, and the Boston Crusaders -as well as top DCA organizations including the Connecticut Hurricanes and the Syracuse Brigadiers. Some of Gene’s mentors include drum corps and music educator greats such as Jim Prime Jr., Pepe Notaro, Charley Poole and the late George Parks.

Gene brings a great deal of excitement and enthusiasm to the Drum Corps activity and is truly a great asset to the Carolina Gold family. Currently, Gene is the director of bands and Everett High School in Everett, Massachusetts and resides with his wonderful wife Carol O’Brien.

Front Ensemble Arranger: Sean Combes
Sean Combes is an arranger, instructor, and clinician living in Cary, NC where he is the Percussion Director for the Wake Forest – Rolesville High School music program in Wake Forest, North Carolina. He is active as a percussion arranger and clinician for numerous colleges and high schools up and down the east coast and is featured on Standing O Marching, Dynamic Marching, and System Blue. Sean is also an arranger and consultant for the George Mason University “Mean Green” independent open percussion ensemble from Fairfax, Virginia as well as the front ensemble arranger/coordinator for the perennial DCA Finalist and 2010 DCA High Percussion Award Winner Carolina Gold Drum & Bugle Corps from Greensboro, North Carolina.

Sean attended Virginia Commonwealth University in Richmond, VA where he studied with Donald Bick and Howard Curtis, performing in the Wind Ensemble, Percussion Ensemble, and various solo and chamber groups. He is the co-founder of Mid-Atlantic Marching Arts, a pageantry design and consultation company specializing in both outdoor and indoor program design and coordination. Sean was a member of the world champion Cavaliers Drum & Bugle Corps as well as a 2001 Percussive Arts Society International Convention clinic participant.

Guard Choreographers: Jordan Hurley and Drew Zellmer

Hurley is a recent graduate of Appalachian State University, where she participated in the color guard program for three years. Jordan participated in DCI as a member of Southwind Drum & Bugle Corps in 2007 and as a DCA Finalist with Carolina Gold in 2009. She competed at the national level as member of Carolina Visual Productions from 2005 through 2008 and now serves as a board member. She has instructed several high school color guard programs in North Carolina and also served as Caption Head of the Carolina Gold Color Guard in 2010.

Zellmer graduated from Chapel Hill High School in 2006 and began his spinning career with Carolina Visual Productions in 2007. Since then he has performed with several ensembles in North Carolina including Wakefield Independent (2009) and First Flight Winter Guard (2010 – Present). In the summers of 2007 and 2009 Drew performed with the Madison Scouts Drum and Bugle Corps, aging out in 2009.

Drew now works with the Cape Fear High School Marching Band/Guard, of Fayetteville North Carolina (2008 – present) as their Color Guard instructor/choreographer. He has also worked with various ensembles around the Raleigh area including Wakefield High School and South Johnston High School. Drew currently resides in Cary, North Carolina.

For more information about the Carolina Gold Drum and Bugle Corps please contact the Corps Public Relations Director, Bob Callicutt at 336-407-4609 or via email at brc031 [at] gmail [dot] com

Posted by on Tuesday, April 5th, 2011. Filed under Current News, DCA News, FrontPage Feature.