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Your Drum Corps Experience

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  1. Staff Spotlight: Introducing Timmy Allen, Our Show Designer and Brass Arranger! Let's give a thunderous applause to the heartbeat of our musical journey - Timmy Allen! With an illustrious 7 years and counting with the New York Skyliners, Timmy is the creative force that breathes life into our shows. As the DCI All-Age Division beckons, Timmy can't wait to lead us into a season filled with excitement, innovation, and the unmistakable Skyliner spirit. Want to join us for the inaugural DCI All-Age Season? Complete an interest form today: https://skylinersdbc.org/interest/ #MeetTheStaff #TimmyAllen #NewYorkSkyliners #marchsky #drumcorps #marching #DCA #dci #brass #colorguard #percussion #frontensemble #drumcorps #bugle #marchingband #growdrumcorps #trumpet #baritone #tuba #mellophone #dcacorps #weareDCA #dciallage #allageswelcome
  2. We're thrilled to introduce our new design staff members for the upcoming season! Get ready for some incredible performances. Complete an interest form today: https://skylinersdbc.org/interest/ #NYSkyliners #marchsky #dci #dci #allage #designteam
  3. There's a art to percussion writing, and sometimes a good percussion book can make or break a show. As someone who's looking to get involved in more percussion arranging, what are some hallmark shows to look to to learn? What shows have come to define how a book is written? What makes it great? Why does it stand out from the rest? Any random tips, facts, or tidbits of information? Discuss.
  4. I saw Hadestown on Broadway a few weeks ago and cannot get the idea of it being a DCI show out of my head. If you are familiar with the visual staging and body movement they use in particular it just seems to all the boxes, yet still be immensely entertaining. If not, watch "chant" in the video of the entire show. I now realize I can't post the YouTube link, but if you search for 1920 Greek Mythology (London) you will find the full show visually. Chant starts at minute 37, and is the song that inspired me. I, of course, would love Cadets to do it and I've even reached out to say I would write the body movement and help with staging (an area they must improve if they are going to get back to the top). Note: I have never designed anything in DCI, but have always thought I could if the right opportunity presented itself. The prop alone. (a rising and falling 3 layered circle that moves in different directions and speeds depending on the layer) creates so many possibilities. Do you guys think it's impossible to do a "Broadway Show" as an entire theme now? The first show I ever saw was SCV 89. That is what got me into the activity as well as Cadets Les Mis. Now, it's like that is too straight forward and not innovative. Would love feedback/thoughts. Thanks! P.S. - Of course given the jazz influences BD is a great fit for this especially given their movement prowess and have Scott Chandler, but.......past time to mix things up.
  5. Although I am utilizing the Bluecoat's 2022 program as a framework for my discussion on Narration, I do not wish to have my comments adversely impact the efforts of the MM and most of the staff of this admiral corps for which I have always had great respect. The MM do what they are taught to do. My commentary is directed at the Bluecoat's design team and DCI's tolerance of narration. In another thread in a recent DCI World Class forum, a contributor whose thoughts I respect (Poppycock and his indomitable crew) said about the Bluecoat's 2022 progrqm that " The more I see them, the less I like them ". I agee with their conclusion. His crew may have their own reasons for their conclusions but here is mine : the godawful use of narration. The Blue coat's design team's use of narration is an insult to Drum & Bugle Corps. The DCI judging community's tolerance of narration of the scale and scope used in the Bluecoat's 2022 program is unfathomable. Consider the Bluecoat's program presented at Kent, Ohio on July 2, 2022. First, you have this enormous paper-mache head, and its accoutermonts, planted on the 35 yard line of one quadrant of the field, effectively blocking perhaps one fifth of the field and artificially reducing the demands of field coverage. Second, you have an electronic narration by Lou Reed or Dennis Hopper or Lou Hopper or Dennis Reed or Jack Kerouac or Joe Schmoe rambling on about ?????.. Third, the show at Kent, as viewed on the You Tube presentation took ca. 12 min; I calculated a start time on the YT presentation of 3 minutes, 55 seconds and an finish time of about 14 minutes, 52 seconds. Of that 12 minutes of "Show Time", about 21.7 % of the time was spent on narration, 60.8 % on Music and 17.5 % on Other Stuff. I grant you that, during that 21.7 % of the time spent on narration, there were judgeable movements of parts of the corps but there was little or no music to be judged. So, what to do? One option is to allow drum corps to continue to use (in my judgement, to be corrupted by) narration. Another is to take a stand and say no to any electronic narration on the field. A third is to say yes to narration but your corps will be, e.g., penalized .1 or .5 or 1.0 point (you choose) for every 5 or 10 or 15 seconds (you choose) the corps' designers utilize this technique. In the case of the Bluecoat's Kent, Ohio presentation, they used ca. 156 seconds ( 2.6 minutes) of narration. That might not make any difference in some of their early season competitions (e.g., they beat the Crossmen in Kent by 6.65 points) but come San Antonio and Denton and beyond, it would. To do nothing re this narration intrusion into D&BC competition will resort in a parody or travesty of our beloved marching arts : in a lighter measure, as a parody, t will be a satirical imitation of D&BC competition in the future or, as a travesty, it will become a grotesque imitation. What do you want?
  6. I got this in my inbox today due to my use of their services. No doubt this is an attempt to do some major PR control. I'm not sure what specifically made them want to send this out though. Maybe issues related to DCI, WGI, and MFA? "Dear #### I would like to take this opportunity to re-introduce Tresóna: who we are, what we do, and why we do it. Tresóna was started, and is currently staffed, by musicians, educators and music fans. We have created a simple and cost-effective licensing platform and are committed to protecting the rights of songwriters to make sure that they are rightfully compensated for their work. Thousands of hard-working songwriters and publishers are dependent on the royalties collected from the licensing of their music to survive. A vast majority of these publishers are small family businesses with one or two employees; they are not multi-national corporations. They are no different than the arrangers, choreographers, set designers, costume creators and thousands of others whose livelihood is dependent on a vibrant music industry. Music is the key ingredient and the foundation of all performance ensembles. Without songs, there would be no marching bands, show choirs, a cappella groups or any other musical performance group. The licensing of custom arrangements, which is required by the U.S. Copyright Act, is often one of the smallest line items in the budget of many ensemble programs. Most performance ensembles obtain the necessary licenses; however, there are some ensembles and organizations which refuse to do so. The abuse of the system by these groups for illicit financial gain has been shocking. There are large enterprises with ensembles that travel all over the country performing at both nonprofit and for-profit events. They pay enormous sums of money for choreographers, arrangers, contest entry, lighting, costumes, props and a host of other outside services. Despite having budgets of more than $500,000/year and generating surpluses of over $150,000/year, these organizations refuse to get the licenses they need and compensate songwriters for their songs. Rather than pay the relatively small licensing fee and promote proper licensing behavior, some ensembles have opted instead to retain high-priced lawyers and consultants to avoid obtaining the necessary licenses. When the dedication of this small group of ensembles deprives songwriters of their ability to make a living, Tresóna and the rights holders we represent are forced to defend these rights in court. When this happens, it is disappointing and begs the question: How can the community as a whole promote participation in the arts and suggest to students that a career in music is viable if it doesnt support the foundation of the entire music ecosystem - the songs and the songwriters? Tresóna is proud of the work we do and deeply value the excellent working relationships we have developed with thousands of arrangers, directors, music educators, parents and performers around the country. We are committed to partnering with, and listening to, the ensemble community so that we may grow these relationships, as well as nurture new ones. We thank you for your support and look forward to our continued relationship in the years to come. Best, Larry Mills EVP, Tresóna" ..... End of letter I absolutely understand the need for composers/arrangers/creators to be compensated. I also understand that there are groups (both scholastic and independent) that have extremely bloated design budgets. But in my opinion, this copyright situation is getting a bit out of hand, at least in regards to video performances. We are losing an opportunity to share with our younger generations the great performances organizations like DCI, WGI, and MFA have to offer. Our kids (and educators) are missing the ability to see their peers across the country achieve things that they didn't know were possible. I can't even purchase older BOA and WGI DVDs for our library anymore. What are your thoughts about what Tresona is saying?
  7. Greetings! For about six months now I have hosted Sketchbook Podcast which focuses on creativity, preparation, & effort with artists, creators, & educators. Part 1 of the interview with Chris Komnick, executive director of the Madison Scouts, releases at midnight on April 13th. I fully realize that to many, Komnick and/or the Scouts tend to incite some polarizing posts and threads. But this episode is drum corps related and so I thought I would make sure to publicize here. Ep. 28, Part 1: Chris Komnick (Executive Director, Madison Scouts D&BC) So that you have an idea of what exactly we talked about, here are the bullet points for Part 1: Personal Profile Life, Education, and career Komnick's path from marching member to executive director. Is drum corps too expensive? Increase in costs, where does the tuition go, & how much does member tuition actually cover. The effects of BAC assembling their "super group" of designers and staff in 2016 & the California Wage & Hour Laws on DCI. Have the two coasts altered the financial landscape of DCI? Does the cancellation of the 2020 season function as a "financial reset" for DCI? The timeline and process behind deciding to become gender-inclusive. To some, this may not seem we got too deep into DCI and/or the Madison Scouts. But I assure you that Part 2 will definitely focus on the highs and lows of the Madison Scouts. Part 2 will release later this week. Sketchbook Podcast is available on Apple Podcasts, Spotify, Google Podcasts, & wherever fine podcasts are downloaded. Ep. 28, Part 1: Chris Komnick (Executive Director, Madison Scouts D&BC)
  8. Chances are, when the Drum Corps activity first resumes competition, some things will be different. For the sake of discussion (not argument), I am going to assume: 1. Corps will be smaller and less experienced (having lost both recruiting and training opportunities) 2. Shows will be shorter (there will be less time to teach material, and at least at first, this will not be done in person) Ergo, the role for a keyboard-driven front group will expand. Brass could learn and perform 30% of their current content, visuals could be taught efficiently, and even the smallest corps could present entertaining shows. In other words, show design would be primarily built around the pit. Brass and battery would serve essentially as reinforcement, flipping the current script. This scenario might be transitional, or produce a new framework for an additional category. Individual shows might still be presented "prerecorded" if necessary for a time, but could be edited together into a contest format, adjudicated, and watched by anyone interested, supported by a modest subscription. Question: Would this promote a more positive attitude towards the use of electronics, overall?
  9. Drum Corps - An Activity To Career In related posts; KeithHall has posted numerous topics in Historical Junior Corps Discussions including How Did You Start in Drum Corps? By KeithHall, February 12 in Historical Junior Corps Discussions https://www.drumcorpsplanet.com/forums/index.php?/topic/172531-how-did-you-start-in-drum-corps/ Skeletor '96 posted: Why I joined the Cavaliers in the 1990s By Skeletor '96, February 20 in DCI World Class Corps Discussions https://www.drumcorpsplanet.com/forums/index.php?/topic/172568-why-i-joined-the-cavaliers-in-the-1990s/ rpbobcat posted: Not Exactly Drum Corps By rpbobcat, January 26 in DCI World Class Corps Discussions https://www.drumcorpsplanet.com/forums/index.php?/topic/172472-not-exactly-drum-corps/ bdkappasig posted: famous corp members (13 pages of posts) By bdkappasig, July 19, 2006 in DCI World Class Corps Discussions https://www.drumcorpsplanet.com/forums/index.php?/topic/82724-famous-corp-members/page/3/ I posted: Not Necessarily Drum Corps - Female Brass Players By Rich Cline, Tuesday at 05:54 PM in DCI World Class Corps Discussions https://www.drumcorpsplanet.com/forums/index.php?/topic/172653-not-necessarily-drum-corps-female-brass-players/&tab=comments#comment-3876900 Besides the usual things learned in drum corps like musicianship and character, marching in a corps teaches you discipline, focus, respect, and to have an open mind. I envy those who have marched and gone on to have professional careers in the music industry. There many famous people that were involved in drum corps going back to "Cubby" in the Mouseketeers, the invent of the "Blue Man" Group and recently and article referencing Chic Corea and a new jazz album which was released. Following is a list complied from various forums listing famous people that are known or believed to have marched. Famous people that were involved in drum corps. (Alpha List Sort) Billy Cobham was in the Sunrisers Chad Sexton marched Skyriders Drum & Bugle Corps Chic Corea marched when he was a kid. A friend of a person met him back in 93 and he (the friend), being a Devils alum, asked wheather he had ever heard Blue Devils' performances of his (Chic's) music. So they got to talking about drum corps stuff and found out that he marched soprano when he was a youngster (the corps name Purple Knights jumps to mind, but I'm unable to verify). Another poster said Chick Corea marched in the St. Rose's Scarlet Lancers (from the Boston area) Chuck Mangione Cliff Klaven (aka John Ratzenberger) played bass drum with the Royal Lancers in Bridgeport, CT in the '60's. Dave Gibbs (Blue Devils director) marched Blue Devils soprano Doc Severinson marched with a corps in Eastern Oregon in his youth. It was an American Legion Post corps (no name is specific). Ed McMahon George (Mr. Sulu) Takei marched in the L.A. Koyasan Scouts. Glenn Kotche marched Cavaliers Drum & Bugle Corps Maynard Ferguson was said to have marched in a corps from Canada... and one poster said that he heard that Maynard "worked" with Toronto Optimist hornline in the late '60s. Michael Jackson (the football player with the Seahawks in the 80's, not the gloved one) marched with the Columbians of Tri Cities, Wa in the 70's. An article talked about Tommy Lee going through various drum corps' in his youth. But didn't say which Corps he was in. Pat Petrillo marched Bridgemen Drum & Bugle Corps A close friend of a person had a Rush autobiography book..in this book, an interviewer asks Neil if he marched...he said no. He did however say he liked them. Russ McKinnon is the drummer for Tower of Power now. Tower of Power marched in 27th Lancers Skip Prokup(sp?), drummer for Lighthouse("One Fine Morning") marched Optimist; he even pulled out a full size corps snare on a stand during concerts. He does a religion show on local radio now. Steve Gadd marched with the Rochester Crusaders Drum & Bugle Corps from Rochester, New York. Steve Rondinaro (corps unknown) Two members of the group The Who (John Entwistle and Keith Moon) marched in a corps in England. Tommy Igoe: New York Voices ...bridgemen..early 80's Wayne Downey (Blue Devils Arranger) marched Sunrisers I'm sure there are so many more. See: famous corp members (13 pages of posts) By bdkappasig, July 19, 2006 in DCI World Class Corps Discussions So, my topic for discussion is: Drum Corps - An Activity To Career Q: How did your time in drum corps impact or enhance your career?
  10. This post may sound a bit "Corny" but I would like to acknowledge cfirwin3 as "Teacher of the Weekend" for the week ending 7-28-19. He has provided us with some very detailed and informative posts explaining a number of points about music and the drum corps activity. Additionally, he has uploaded a series of videos on youtube comparing older drum corps shows to newer show designs. Well Done and Thank You
  11. So everyone usually does a new ending between San Antonio and Atlanta. Anybody heard who has plans for new endings?
  12. Colts 2019 (When Hell Freezes Over) Mandarins 2018 (and some might say 2019) Music City 2018 (Hell on Wheels) Crown 2015 (Inferno) SCV 2011 (The Devil's Staircase) Seems to be a pretty popular theme. Any ideas why? (Thinking too much about the Texas tour, maybe?)
  13. It seems like having massive props is getting more and more expected/required - whose work, whose do not?
  14. This is an honest question, not rhetorical and not a rant. I'm not trolling, and would appreciate non-defensive answers, even though my question may sound provocative. Does anyone here know what the show designers are trying to convey with the writhing, contorted posturing, crouching, squatting, reclining and grimacing? Is this a popular style with no intended meaning? Is it just motion intended to create visual interest? Is it supposed to express emotion? Is it interpretive dance intended to tell a story? A blend of marching and dance? Watching, I feel confused, and I'd really like to know what the designers have in mind.
  15. The Mummers are the costume kings of visual design. My favorite winter event. I am not trying to take away from either activity but I think they have been drawing closer together in recent years in show design and attire. Who is coping who?
  16. First, the good: It’s nice to hear brass lines punching up the volume again and most corps are accomplishing this without field microphones. Congratulations! Design staffs listen to the veterans and fans after all! We want a big sound and we want it to be produced by natural means. Now, with that being said, each corps used to have its own particular sound. Back in the day you could pick out a brass line blindfolded: Phantom had a particular sound, Madison had a distinctive sound, etc. No longer. Every brass arranger in DCI seems to use the same technique. The trumpet parts are arranged similarly, etc., and its hard to distinguish between some of the brass lines today. Sure, there are differences in quality and clarity but in general there is what I call sameness across DCI. To me things sound tuba- and mellophone-heavy across the board especially live. Even some of the best brass lines in the country sound like a radio with the bass turned up and the treble turned down. Other than from the Blue Devils I don’t hear the searing-hot trumpet sound cutting over the top of the brass section. To my mind the best brass sections shade a little toward the treble end of the balance scale; not a lot, just a little. Look, modern brass lines are amazing but it sounds like the parts were ripped from Arban’s technique book. Would it hurt to play more than four consecutive measures of an actual piece? Other than parts of “Bolero” by The Cavaliers, a couple bars of “God Bless the Child” by the Bluecoats, and a trumpet solo from Phantom Regiment in “New World Symphony,” I don’t hear much I recognize. It’s mostly a ten minute mashup.
  17. Hi, everyone, before I get to my next match up episode, I wanted to take some time and talk about uniforms in DCI. Uniforms have been around since the birth of the marching arts. However, starting in 2016, a movement began. The Bluecoats won their first championships wearing costumes that were customed designed. When the Bluecoats made their departure, other corps followed the same path. In 2017, The Santa Clara Vanguard, The Blue Knights, The Cadets, The Madison Scouts, Gold, Southwind, and The Guardians made the move to costumes. Seeing this movement makes one wonder how long do traditional uniforms, ( shakos, plumes, jackets, and pants ), have until they cease to exist in the Drum Corps World. When looking at the costumes themselves, they have both won championships and lost championships. In the 2016, The Bluecoats won their very first championship wearing costumes. However, the following year in 2017, The Bluecoats, The Cadets, and The Blue Knights finished lower than they did in 2016. On the flip side, The Santa Clara Vanguard and The Madison Scouts finished higher than they did last year in 2016. Santa Clara Vanguard managed to climb up all they way into the top three for the first time since 2004 and The Madison Scouts made it back into the finals after finishing 13th in 2016. For the Open Class Corps, The Guardians, Southwind, and Gold became the first open class corpsnto wear costumes. The movement of using costumes has spread to both the World Class Corps and the Open Class Corps. In my opinion, I like uniforms and hope that they stick around in drum corps. Now, in this thread, please post below what your thoughts are on uniforms and costumes in DCI.
  18. Hey beautiful people! So here are my thoughts. I've been living in Vegas for a year now and there is not much of a WGI presence out here. UNLV has an IO guard but that's the extent of it. I want to start an IW guard here (and maybe IO, IA and scholastic if the interest dictates). My previous groups used bingo halls for funding as many do. I have some connections with a number of businesses out here that may be willing to help with initial start up. I was thinking that since the casino/gambling industry is so large out here, perhaps one or more companies would be willing to sponsor us if we advertise for them. There is a strong sense of community and local support in this city and it could potentially make the difference. I am also curious as to how many people in the area would be interested in this. Are there others here who want a world guard? Has this been attempted before in this area? Are there people who want to teach and march? Help with competitions and the like? Everything in between? I marched Bluecoats, Empire Statesmen and Patriots IO (including others that do not have name recognition so I won't list them). Drop some words if you have the desire! Let's make something cool!
  19. SDCA is looking for Music , Percussion or Design professionals that would like to advertise for free.. go to ..thesdca.org to sign up
  20. It is readily becoming apparent this season that the new trend of amplifying entire hornlines (or large ensembles) is not sitting well with the fanbase. I have seen many calls for either the judges to limit rewarding or even penalize amplification of this magnitude, I've seen calls for DCI to change rules to better define what can and can't be done. All this clamoring will not do anything if confined to DCP. Action is what brings change. I ask the community, the fans, parents, and alumni, for help in drafting an open letter to DCI. We obviously have concerns, let us voice them directly. Being able to sign on to the letter will obviously be important, as there is strength in numbers. It should be disseminated as far as possible as well: to Reddit, at shows, etc. I do not know a platform that will facilitate this, so help here is appreciated. Below, I've typed out an example of what this could look like. Please help me flesh it out a bit. I will consider all criticism, as long as it is constructive. And please, keep the subject to amplification and electronics usage, this is not the proper time for an argument about rights, streaming, the fan network, etc.
  21. Hey DCP, I'd love it if y'all could take a look at something I've been working on. Specifically, my new Mac app for marching drill design called – wait for it – Drill! http://celestialteapot.com/drill/ I noticed that existing drill design apps tend to be pretty pricy, so I set out to create one of my own. Drill is not quite as sophisticated or feature-rich as some of the much-more-expensive drill design apps out there, but I think it's got all the most important features. Drill has a nice Bezier Path tool that allows you to create formations of literally any shape. Of course you can print out Drill-Set Sheets for your show, and you can also generate individual Coordinate Sheets for each marching member. And Drill also has a animated playback feature for watching your show back as a 2D animation. If you're a Mac user, you can download the free trial version of Drill from my website link above. And if you like what you see, do me a solid and tell your friends/colleagues! Thanks!
  22. Crimson Kings Drum Corps seeks Drill designer for Soundsport shows and an upcoming Brooklyn Nets fall 2017 Barclays Center performance. We are looking for both prepackaged drill (preferably scalable) and group specific drill options. Our Corps is currently 25 members. We are actively recruiting and 60 members is our target number. Open to all styles of music, however our Corps still uses G bugles and Fifes. Open to Avant garde, traditional military, and hybrid drill maneuvers, dance, etc. Our Members range from ages 10 to 22. Content should be age and guideline appropriate. Please have links to any of your materials, and compensation requirements. Open to experienced and brand new designers and arrangers. The New York Crimson Kings Drum, Fife and Bugle Corps, established in the 1950s, is the oldest and most honored Asian-American drum corps on the east coast dedicated to youth development through music and performing arts education. Please let us know if you also teach your drill with the staff. Should be familiar with marching band, DCI, DCA, Soundsport judging requirements and Maneuvers Send examples, resume/experience to nycrimsonkings@gmail.com crimsonkings.com facebook.com/crimsonkings
  23. SDCA (Small Drum Corps Association) would like to have profession music arrangers, percussion, and choreographers advertise for FREE on the SDCA website. www.thesdca.org. Do you think there would be interested professionals looking for something like this?
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