Fred Windish

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Everything posted by Fred Windish

  1. I’m anxious to hear more about this DCA in Indy concept. First, an official announcement From both DCI and DCA. If such an event does take place, I am very reserved in expectations. So many hurdles to overcome, but still a worthy effort. Even if the event draws flies, DCI should be given credit for providing the opportunity. I continue to believe the current, and practical, radius of operation for existing DCA corps and fans is somewhere inside a 300-400 mile limit of where one lives. Remember, too, even Williamsport hasn’t been maxed-out at this point. I’d focus there first. None the less . . . good luck !
  2. Stldrmn1- I understand, and share, your desire to see DCA become a nationwide traveling product. But, I’m convinced funds for that development are now, just not there ! Even a smaller DCA is struggling to continue on. There’s inadequate revenue coming in to both the corps, and to the DCA governing body. The Championship is no longer a big, end of year payout. There’s an insufficient amount of sponsorship dollars to DCA, a lack of added revenue from digital media products, etc. Beyond all this, travel costs for everyone concerned are rising rapidly. THIS is where DCA is. In my opinion, the manageable, one way travel distance for everyone concerned is now limited to about an 8 hour drive. Beyond this radius, the experience is too costly, as you note. Now is a time for DCA to simply BEAR DOWN.
  3. So sorry to hear this, Jay. I could always tell your heart was really into the organization. Maybe something will change.
  4. Curious to me, no one from Bushwackers reading here (has to be some) has come forward to discount this report as unfounded. This kind of rumor would seem to negatively affect recruiting for the new season. Several corps use the next four weeks for Open House events, etc. I want to believe this is a careless, nasty rumor. If so, it still needs to be cleared up. Agree?
  5. Well, this would be terrible news. Not only was that a corps that valued quality performance standards, they were a past champion. Could also mean loss of show sponsorship. My experience with Jay was a good one. All we can do is hope for a positive resolution.
  6. Some crazy good festivals around the country! We’ve enjoyed the Shrimp & Grits Festival at Jekyll Island. Yumm! You’re always welcome to my home, Fran!
  7. Still no lights at Goodman. New this year is a large video board, however. Overall, Goodman would be problematic. Natural grass, potential conflict with home football games, only 2-lane roads leading to it, excessive distance from front sideline to grandstand, and an elitist administration that would prefer not to be involved. They sure don’t need the revenue. By the way, I pretty much live right across the street !
  8. Reading all of this, I don’t get the impression most object to introducing new sounds into the program, electronically , even by live human performance from the pit area. Of course, not! What I hope not to see are moving woodwind player groups intertwined out on the field. We have enough of that all across America, already.
  9. First of all, hope you are feeling much better, hairbear ! You’ve been good for DCA. thanks. Jeff - I believe a worthy event promoter is one who sees empty seats as a missed opportunity. A shortcoming in-house, not the fault of anything else. Start to improve the condition there. Yes, there are unavoidable impediments, like weather. No domes available here, unfortunately. Unless you count one in Syracuse that has no air-conditioning!
  10. To clarify, the 'financial gains' I refer to involve the following players. Equipment manufacturers/retailers Instructors and Designers who receive compensation that can rise for a variety of reasons Anyone receiving income from managing individual corps and/or organizations like DCI Recipients of dues payments Aspiring composers Aspiring instructors/technicians Inventive souvenir merchants YES, there is a continuing desire for more income. Everywhere one looks.
  11. karuna - You have just provided one of the most brilliant assessments of the situation many enthusiasts are facing right now. Today, it’s use of woodwinds, earlier it was amplification. Very much agree the uncontrolled introduction of electronic enhancement in DCI is a serious concern to a huge segment of the audience. Beyond limited application to assist projection of soloists, very small ensembles, and for subtle sound effects, these new ‘toys’ have the capability of dominating, even destroying, our appreciation of DCI’s incredible young talent. But, the value of your message lies in your explanation of why such potential monsters can appear. It’s all a matter of personal taste, certainly. But, egos and financial gain weigh heavily on these decisions. Now, use of woodwinds is seen as a significant threat by some. Yet another monster change that has the same likelihood of misuse. Small changes are one thing. They often improve the product. Many, including me, fear a significant addition of on-field woodwinds will lead beyond just strengthening an existing product we value, but to its complete erasure.
  12. Right you are, Jim! First you have to get them in the door. Even if that means healthy discounts to local groups and, possibly, be more liberal with comp tickets for promotional use. Next, provide a good enough experience to attract them back, hopefully at regular price. I have no idea what strategies were used in Williamsport so far. I do think there was some sort of reduced price plan put in place near the end. Some of the promotional tools are better done with DCA people who actually live in the community and are available any day of the week.
  13. There’s truth in what you write. Seen it first hand. Like you, I want DCA to continue on. Above all, there needs to be common agreement among the corps, a statement of action, if you will. . . . “ Look. We’ve committed to Williamsport for another two years. We must dedicate our energies to squeezing more revenue from there. That will require some changes in the way we’ve done things. A bigger investment of time and effort.” My hope is, DCA does not go down the easy path of simply raising prices. As it was, about 2000 Finals seats remained to be sold. Even more unsold seats for Prelims. Hard to tell how much additional revenue might eventually come from the internet broadcast, but this year’s broadcast was far less engaging than the previous year. Not referring to the corps, but the peripheral things that hold the package together, like Press Box hosts and guest interviews, etc. Like it, or not, weather will play a role. Fingers crossed.
  14. Seems to me, every new music producer, that is not a brass instrument, comes at the expense of playing time by the brass. At least to some extent, from an entire (new instrument) ensemble segment to just a featured solo. BIG BRASS IMPACT (a crowd pleaser every time) becomes less likely. I want BIG BRASS to remain the “Star of the Show,” Center Stage attraction. Yes, percussion at this level is also spectacular ! 🤭
  15. True story, 1969. I was a member of Liberty High School Band. One (1) week from graduation. I notified Director Ronald Sherry I would miss a parade due to my first performance as a Reading Buccaneer. He actually gave me an ultimatum. I need to choose between his band and Buccaneers. I told him “I choose the Buccaneers.” The goofball than gave me an F in Band on my fourth quarter report card of my Senior Year ! Only failing grade I ever received throughout all Public Schools and later, three college degrees. Yes, there was some tension between drum corps and band back then, at least in Bethlehem, PA.
  16. To understand why changes are made it is important to understand who/what powers the decision. We can all provide opinions, but as individuals, even small groups of individuals, we have very little sway. So far, I’ve been pleased with most of the new enhancements over the years. Except for needless electronic amplification to the extent we sometimes hear now, most of it abrasive, off-putting, even deceptively fake. I also ask, does DCI really need to replicate the full, traditional style marching band we see by the thousands all across America? I think not. I prefer something more unique and special. Better, more thrilling, in its own way. Rows of moving clarinets will likely cause me to lose interest. As it is, I don’t watch BOA, or WGI. But, I accept thousands and thousands do. I won’t be missed.
  17. Greg, I agree with what you write! However, the prevailing opinion is, what you and I call “drum corps” can become whatever it wants to become. So long as the bills are paid, the various “players” remain intact, it’s a go. The ENDEAVOR won’t necessarily be dead.
  18. My expectation of woodwinds being formally added to DCI judged performances is well-founded. Looking back over almost 50 years of DCI participation, it is my belief this step follows what has been the natural progression of the organization. We can all name a long list of changes, from using a backfield starting line, key change, all through today's vocals and heavy electronics. One might not like the addition of woodwinds but such a decision does follow a longstanding pattern. Would this really be surprising?
  19. Spatzzz, please clarify. Are you saying "Woodwinds are not coming." Or, if woodwinds are coming, it's of no concern to me." To be honest, such an addition is really of no concern to me. I will sample the new product with an open mind and decide for myself.
  20. I share many of the concerns being expressed here. Again, I do expect DCI to become full-blown Summer Band. The sponsors are driving this bus! There's also the desire to increase participation to additional types of young musicians. Plus, all the family and friends that come with that. The decision-makers behind today's "drum corps" have willingly acceded to a free-form product. That will come at a cost to uniqueness of product and historic tradition. For me, it's somewhat sad to see, but . . . . could be the right course. I'm willing to wait until deciding to discount the product altogether. If that day does come, the loss of this one fan will be made up with many other fans who do approve . So be it. Yes, woodwinds are on the way.
  21. Not sure what to make of these expressions . Is it that DCA would be better off without the Buccaneers? Or, DCA would do better if there were more Buccaneers?
  22. Absolutely! I considered mentioning her, too. She had the look, the attitude, and of course, the talent. As maligned a show as it was . . . I saw lots to like there from Cadets. I still watch the Blu-ray! By season’s end, Cadets made that show into winner for me. Not opposed to new instrumentation, just not a fan of flute and clarinet squads charging? the front.
  23. Here’s my personal concern, believing woodwinds will become a part of DCI soon. Will I ease into acceptance? As an older fan who has had his enthusiasm in DCI presentations renewed by taking full advantage of Flo Marching Arts Channel, when does the “bridge become too far” for me to cross? Should such lost interest come to me is, of course, no significance to the whole of the activity. It’s a personal matter only. Reality is, I have full access to all the WGI & BOA telecasts but have no interest in watching those events. Something is missing there for me to become an enthusiast. DCI still works for me, albeit in a new delivery format. A Summer Season BOA? Maybe not. By the way, the Blue Devils use of a violinist this year was magnificent. A highlight for me.
  24. I wrote something here a few years ago expressing my belief woodwinds in DCI is inevitable. Still feel that way. I know music instrument suppliers would agree! I can see a slow intro, however, something like this . . . an extended pit group. Possibly 16-20 players, off to the side, under a clear plastic covering (when necessary). DCI is all about broad music and performance education, attracting sponsors who sell "stuff," appealing to school band directors, and building a bigger base of young musicians to participate. It's too early for me to claim I would say "goodbye." I'm pretty open-minded about change.