onceuponatime

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About onceuponatime

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  1. Dave,

     

    I have carefully read (twice) your post to JohnD. I agree with you and can not find what it was (is) that caused such an opinion that you were, in ANY way, attempting to be confrontational. Perhaps it's that I am also "Old School" Drum Corps and was brought up in a different time. (Actively competing from 1963-1985) I can relate to what, IMHO, you were attempting to say in your choice of words. I also came from a time when each Drum Corps lived their Corps' "Traditions".

     

    Yours in Corps,

    Tony
    PS: Thank you for your mention of my al-mater... BAC, 1969

  2. I found your reaction to what I wrote to be beyond my apparently limited ability to understand. I would have no objection whatsoever if a mod agrees with your characterization and wishes to remove my post. Nor would I have any objection to any other post I wrote to be similarly removed. I don't think that any further attempts on my part to understand your viewpoint would provide any additional clarification for me.

  3. onceuponatime

    Cadets 2018

    This flag was not presented for the usual reason. It was one of the flags that flew over The U.S. Capitol the day that The Holy Name Cadets won their sixth American Legion National Title at Convention Hall (the finals was an indoor show) in Atlantic City, N.J. ,1957. Fifty years later at the same site The Cadets who marched in that show gathered for the 50th Anniversary of "their" championship. It was a three-day event and nearly every Cadet who marched in that show was present for the anniversary festivities. At the banquet on Saturday evening, held on the exact same floor on which they had competed, Cadet Alumnus Ken Shedosky called the Drum Major (Alumnus Tony Bartello), and the Section Leaders (Percussion Sergeant Alumnus Bob Peterson, Soprano Sergeant Alumnus Donald Angelica, French Horn Sergeant Alumnus John DeOld, and Baritone Sergeant Alumnus Dave Shaw) to the speakers podium to be recognized. Each one of those individuals was then presented with a flag that had flown over The Capitol on that momentous day fifty years prior (with a certificate of authenticity). The flag shown in the photo was the one presented to Dave Shaw (who coincidentally is the Cadet writing this post). I had the flag placed in a display case and formally presented it to The Cadets to be placed on display in the foyer of their office headquarters in Allentown, where to the best of my knowledge it still remains.
  4. onceuponatime

    What goes around comes around

    Right after I made this post I realized what a terrible job I had done in trying to make my point. I attempted to first edit (unsuccessful) and then delete (also unsuccessful). In the original post I wasn't attempting to get a read on who did or did not like The Cadets' 2002 show. The point I was attempting to make, and failed so miserably in doing, was to suggest, as the title of the post indicated, that "what goes around comes around." Admittedly the post title is pretty vague and in retrospect not a good title choice. I am not going to proceed with this topic because I do not believe that anything constructive could be gained by doing so. Things will play themselves out without the need to go head to head with others with strongly differing viewpoints. Again, please accept my apologies for wasting everyone's time. I wish you well as you move forward with your discussions.
  5. Wait a minute! What's going on here? This is 2002, 16 years ago. The Cadets are presenting a "story" show, while wearing their iconic world-famous Cadet uniforms. The uniforms seem to enhance rather than detract from the story being told on the field. The color guard is not only marching up a storm, but they're dancing all over the place, and they're totally integrated with the corps throughout the show. Look at that innovative color guard program, and the mind-boggling use of equipment. The audience is going wild for them. Screaming ovations again, and again, and again throughout their show. Look at the way the entire corps knows how to march a close-to flawless program. Holy cow...that's not supposed to be happening! Were horn lines supposed to be that good and that multi-dimensional in the past? Isn't that what judges are looking for now in 2018? Isn't this what modern-era drum corps is supposed to be all about? Maybe that's what The Cadets should be doing: reviving all their great shows from the past that aren't supposed to work anymore. Did someone screw up the drum corps calendars? Things weren't supposed to be that good back then. Maybe we should rethink what we're doing and where we're going now, because where we're coming from looks to me like it was pretty #### great. Maybe many of the people now clamoring for a "new direction" just aren't old enough to have seen what GREAT DRUM CORPS was really like? THE CADET SHOW BEING REFERENCED IS THEIR 2002 SHOW, AN AMERICAN REVIVAL.
  6. onceuponatime

    Cadets 2018

    I didn't see them as 7th. I saw them as 1st in their own unique class.
  7. onceuponatime

    Cadets 2018

    Why not Cadet? You know that whenever they do it they interpret it differently, and every one of their interpretations to date have been great. I did see it live when it was on Broadway though, so I guess my viewpoint is a bit too personal.
  8. onceuponatime

    Cadets 2018

    I didn't see them as 7th place this year. I saw them as 1st in their own unique class.
  9. onceuponatime

    Cadets 2017

    It would be nice if it was that simple. I assume that all the Board members are on the Board for the right reasons, but they in most cases are too far away from the day to day operations to grasp the problem. As long as they make their periodic contributions and leave other matters pertaining to the corps to George, no one complains...and if they do they are more likely to resign from the Board, rather than take on the unpleasant responsibility of cleaning house. In the past month I have been contacted by two recent board members who told me they had recently resigned from the board because they had become increasingly uncomfortable with the way the corps was being run. I have also been contacted by two parents, one of whom has a son marching Cadets2. She feels that the three day mini-tour that Cadets2 were scheduled to take, but was subsequently cancelled, constituted a breach of contract. A second parent who is himself an alumnus and long-term supporter of the corps has withdrawn his support and permitted his son to switch corps after the 2016 season. I don't know how many of our best and most talented Cadets moved on to other corps at the end of the 2016 season. The numbers were considerable, and that is something that has never before happened to The Cadets, other than a Cadet or two moving on in hopes of getting a ring, or having a love interest or close friends in another corps. None of this is a reflection on our 2017 marching Cadets and Cadets2 who, though in most cases were somewhat younger and inexperienced than those who left, have turned themselves into Cadets in every sense of the word. None of this growing dissatisfaction with George's leadership should be any of their concern. Their focus is on the weeks ahead, and they have turned this season into something that makes most of our alumni very, very proud. In most cases their parents who so generously give of their time and love and resources, really have no conception of the struggle between George and many of our Alumni about the increasing number of red flags we see popping up all over the place. The marching Cadets are focused on the year at hand of course, and that is the way it should be. Many of them view alumni concerns from a competitive aspect, rather than a survival of the corps imperative. The alumni are concerned about the long term survival of The Cadets if George continues to believe that The Cadets are HIS drum corps to do with whatever he pleases, regardless of the growing negative effects his insular mentality is doing in destroying our great and universally respected drum corps. Our marching Cadets are concerned exclusively with the here and now, and we support them and have always supported them in their goals of the year. It is up to the alumni, however, to think about the generation after generation of brand new Cadets hoping for their chance to be a part of something so beloved and widely respected. It is almost our sacred obligation to ensure that our door is always open for The Cadets yet to come, and our reputation as an experience apart will always be secure. The Cadets have thousands of alumni, most of whom have no idea of the dead-end road that George has us traveling. Many others have personal lives that do not permit them the the luxury of keeping in touch with their fellow alumni on a regular basis. Fortunately we also have a large number of alumni for whom the well-being of The Cadets is a rapidly expanding concern; and their numbers seem to be increasing on a weekly basis, as evidenced by the increasing numbers of posts, and letters and messages received by me and others, centered around these concerns that are growing in scope, and appearing more and more frequently. We can never underestimate George and the impenetrable wall he has build around our corps. It is a bizarre, world of his own making, fed by a mental process that is mystifying and beyond the grasp of most of us. For years now we have been asking why there have been no checks on his personalization of The Cadets under the umbrella of George's Youth Education in The Arts. George is a genius, but increasingly over the years his genius more often than not has increasingly been used destructively. It has been sad to watch it happen. Most disturbing at all is that he has developed a "cult of personality" that a good number of our Cadets, during their marching years, have bought into. We probably would as well if all our needs were bring met during the course of a season, and a fascade of individual caring has been indoctrinated into a large number of Cadets. I used to think that George was a natural teacher with a special talent for communication with young people. I wish I could say the same thing now. Observing George very closely over many years I have come to realize that George's primary talent is mind manipulation over the young people he indoctrinates to view only the George that he presents to them at his daily "Hop Talks," and in the many personal conversations he has both with individual Cadets and each year's marching Cadets as a group. The "Cadet Experience" is real, and many, many Cadets have benefitted from it. For many years George, to his credit, expanded upon it and refined it. Then, year by year, it evolved into the "The George Experience;" and that was not a good thing. I don't know how many of you, like myself, during this transition period, were approached by people outside The Cadet family, but emotionally predisposed to support The Cadets, with one question, "Why doesn't your alumni bring him under control? Don't you realize how much his personal pursuit of self gratification is hurting your corps? My response was always the same; "because he's great with kids." I sincerely believed that as well, and like many other alumni, I stuck my head in the sand as George's darker side began to emerge. Over the years he became by far the most disliked person in drum corps, with good reason; and he dragged The Cadets down that dark path with him. OUR corps went from being the most admired and respected corps in the activity, to being what arguably is now the most disliked and criticized. It is not competitive placement that has finally fired up more and more alumni. That comes and goes year by year. It is our revered history, and traditions, and values and image that is of so little consequence to George that he nonchalantly tramples on them, only because he can. That is what is beginning to awaken an alumni sleeping giant. Do I speak for the alumni, hell no! I can speak only for myself and my growing fears that if things keep on going in the same direction under George's ever-growing psychological need for absolute control in every area of Cadet operations, we might wake up at any time to find that we no longer have a corps after 83 years of hard-earned accomplishment and history. This conversation has been running for several years, without any progress whatsoever. A couple of weeks ago I posted a very innocuous post related to this issue. I immediately received two very irate replies from 2017 Cadets. Which opened with the same sentence. "George is The Cadets." One was from a Cadet marching his very first year. He related how George ran with them, rehearsed with them, was out in the sun and rain with them, made sure they have good quality meals to eat, and personally cared about each and every one of them. Therefore, in his mind, George was The Cadets, and he was very outspoken about "alumni who only cared about themselves." I wondered if that was the way I felt under my Corps Director at the time, Bill "The Chief" Kemmerer. I decided it probably was, but much like The Cadets of Today my thinking and feelings were focused totally on myself. When you're young life is all about you. It takes a certain amount of maturity to reach the point when you start to think more about "the big picture," and the future yet to come for both yourself and for the corps we all love. OUR Cadets. FHNSAB...
  10. onceuponatime

    Cadets 2017

    George Dixon, Your response to the post written by an '87 Cadet Alumnus was too condescending to allow it to pass unchallenged. You made yourself a self-appointed critic of the concerns of this Cadet Alumnus who raised issues about the future of our corps...OUR corps, not YOUR corps. I don't know how you view your relationship to The Cadets. I know that you have been a very outspoken supporter of The Cadets, and you have our collective thanks for that support. Being an alumnus of The Cadets, with an assumed love for our corps that most people who have never marched Cadets do not understand, trumps fan status however. Even that of a fan who it appears has developed a close relationship with the current leadership of The Cadets. I doubt that you will agree with me, though I hope that at very least you will think twice about what you said and how you said it. I think you owe this concerned Cadet Alumnus an apology, as much for your tone as for the slanted content of your rebuttal of what he had to say, and his reason for saying it. You don't need to agree with him, but you don't have the right to insult him regardless of your personal viewpoint.
  11. onceuponatime

    Cadets 2017

    Please excuse my intrusion into the world of DCP, where I seldom visit or post. I am a Cadet Alumnus, and have been for many, many years. For that reason I seldom see The Cadets as others see them. It is with great joy at this moment though to read all the positive comments on the 2017 Cadets. Thank you. I too think they are wonderful. I always do, but this year is something more than just wonderful. To The Cadets, their staff who have also proved to be amazing, and to the show they have brought to the field and given life...I am very, very proud. We never know what awaits us at the end of the road, but when you manage to bring so much magic to the journey, you have already succeeded. FHNSAB... Dave Shaw
  12. It's very difficult for another organization to write something that gives comfort to the members and family of another corps, and that also includes extended family, friends;and neighbors; and most of all to Laurie; her daughter, who rightfully should be facing this season with excitement and joy. Sadly, it was not to be. We all travel our own road of life. Sometimes it seems way too short, and other times prolonged beyond reason. We are strangers on Laurie's road, and though we never met we mourn her loss with the entire Trooper family. The Cadets' Alumni, myself in particular, extend our hand of friendship and love to someone we never knew, but wish we had. RIP Laurie. Your road has come to an end, but the memory of all the wonderful things you did in your life, will live on through every star in the sky, twinkling in your honor. Dave Shaw, A Cadet Alumnus with Trooper memories that will never die.
  13. I had and still have, no intention to write a review on the corps in the DCI Season Opener. Severable reasons; first, there are so many different viewpoints being expressed here on DCP. most of them bundled with assumedly shared viewpoints, that I feel that everyone is partly right and everyone is partly wrong. That's not a criticism, just an observation on what I've read to date. Sometimes it seems as though respondents feel the need to throw in a suggestion of two or three, or a criticism of two or three, or a plaudit of two or three, simply to show they are fair-minded. To be honest, I believe that every review I've read seems reasonably fair-minded (at least in the minds of the people making the comments.) There are some things you like about a corps' program or performance, and other things you don't like. There are certain components that you feel seem stronger or weaker than prior years , or that their current year' program is lacking. That seens pretty fair to me, and I think that most are worth reading if for no other reason than to alert me to something I might have missed in one of more of the six corps' performances. Sometimes it matters...most of the time it doesn't. My assumption is that all the many instructors of these corps know far more about what is destined to work, and what isn't; and unless they are deaf, dumb, blind, or irreversibly close-minded, they are already at work fixing whatever it is that needs to be fixed. Of course, there is the other side of the coin where the judges tell you to fix XYorZ that it's costing you points, so you go ahead and fix it, and the next time you meet that judge he gives you an even lower score, then feigns innocence when you call the contradiction to his attention. Do I believe that most judges are trying to do the best they can in an ever-changing drum corps world? Do most of them succeed? I don't have the right to even touch that one, but I'm increasingly ill-a-ease about how many there might be who don't have a clear enough idea of their mandated judging focus while corps are on the field performing. Does personal artistic taste play a role? Who knows? Who can get inside the mind of a judge when he is reacting to what he is watching or listening to. This, as we all know is a chat room. People come here to chat and exchange thoughts and opinions, and sometimes just to be belligerent. I think the posters who annoy me the most are the ones who say, with absolute conviction, that "such and such a corps had the loudest applause of the evening." Or that "everyone sitting around me" seemed to be of this mind or that. That's just plain rubbish, and I'm not a big fan of rubbish. It's particularly irritating when someone shares that judgement even though he wasn't at-site of the contest. I am a Cadet traditionalist, which means I am a pretty hard sell on "new era" drum corps. I attended tonight's show pretty much expecting a major disappointment from every corps whom I knew was scheduled to be present. I had also prepped myself, honestly, to be disappointed, if not outright hostile, based on prior experiences with this first-of-the-season show. As mentioned earlier, I am not going to offer a review of each individual corps based on my own criteria. It would be no more nor no less than tossing another pebble into a stream already loaded with far too many pebbles. for me to even try. I just watched the best season-opening show I have ever viewed, with six of the most memorable (corps) for varying reasons) than I have ever seen in my long lifetime. I thought I had seen it all. As it turns out I haven't even scratched the surface. Tonight I saw more amazing talent, creativity, and performance level than I have ever previously been privileged to enjoy (at this point in the season). I thought every single corps reached well-beyond their efforts of other past years to present something new and different and entertaining than previous years. One after another they blew my mind, Scores don't matter a great deal to me anymore. Frankly I think that the judging criteria needs a total overhaul, but that's just one man's opinion. I honestly think that scores don't matter much except to those who have turned them into an off-season hobby here on Drum Corps Planet, and the young members of each corps who desperately want to see their efforts rewarded in the scoring columns, and the instructors who have to face them with an explanation in their huddle after each underscored performance. How do you explain to a group of hard-working, dedicated, talented young people who think that you can walk on water that you feel they are not receiving the recognition from the judges they feel they deserve. I sure don't have the answer to that one, no matter how many times I've endured it both as a member and as an adult leader. Thank you for your patience in reading through this. At this time of the night my fingers and my brain don't appear to work very well together.