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Ediker

Weapon Imagery in Drum Corps

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Meh, when you really think about rifles and sabers being tossed about by people not in military dress, it’s kind of goofy. I love it but my friend and I still joke about a guard from the late 80s dressed in long flowing gowns tossing about rifles. 

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2 hours ago, 2000Cadet said:

"curves"

*Airblades

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Morality aside, I find weapons increasingly strange from an aesthetic point of view. I marched in an era (late 70s/early 80s) in which rifles and sabers fit perfectly with the predominantly military look, history and demeanor of many drum corps. Most corps wore a modified version of a military uniform. And think of the names of the corps: Phantom Regiment, 27th Lancers, Vanguard, Guardsmen, Cadets, Kingsmen, Troopers, Cavaliers, Scouts, Crusaders, Lancers, Raiders, Knights, etc, etc. Weapons had a natural place at that time.

But the aesthetic and style of corps have changed dramatically in the last several years, and weapons look increasingly odd and out of place. It is a little jarring now to see guard members dressed like Bob Fosse dancers wielding weapons. Its hard to reconcile artistically. Just one of the many weird things about modern drum corps. 

And no, I am not concerned that the use of weapons in drum corps contributes to or condones violence in society. Its a stretch, but you could argue that drum corps illustrates controlled and respectful handling of weapons. Or from a different perspective, the weapons get thoroughly decontextualized and rendered into artistic expressive objects, a wonderful way of turning swords into plowshares. 

 

 

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1 hour ago, 2000Cadet said:

giphy.gif

I don't even know you and I love you! :felloff:

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3 hours ago, Ediker said:

A non drum corps friend expressed concern and dislike for the use of rifles by color guards, particularly in light of the frequent unfortunate events of the past few years.  To me, and likely to other long-timers, a drum corps rifle seems as harmless looking as a flag/silk.  There is no emotional reaction.  

What do others think?  Does the type of equipment used, such as rifles and sabers, somehow send or perpetuate an undesirable message?  I promised to post this and gather your reactions.  

Note: talk of politics and religion are not allowed on DCP, so let's try not to descend into that for the sake of the conversation.  Thanks 

I think most people watching a Drum Corps show see the sequins,  spandex and bugle beads worn by color guards today without ever thinking about shootings or wars. 

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27 minutes ago, Incognito365 said:

I don't even know you and I love you! :felloff:

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2 hours ago, George Dixon said:

We need more weapons. Battle axes and cannons please! Talk about GE 

Just keep the axes away from Jeff Prosperie.

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Aesthetically, they seem a little out of place in a lot of shows, and a lot out of place in some shows.  But I love a big rifle toss, as a lot of other people do I'm sure.  So what to do?

I wonder if something similar could be created that does not look like a rifle, but is balanced in a way that it can be thrown as well, or maybe even better.  Or if lots of different looking pieces of equipment could be fashioned to look like lots of different things, so as to fit shows, while still being balanced to be thrown.  Perhaps there could be an art and science to that?

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21 minutes ago, skevinp said:

Aesthetically, they seem a little out of place in a lot of shows, and a lot out of place in some shows.  But I love a big rifle toss, as a lot of other people do I'm sure.  So what to do?

I wonder if something similar could be created that does not look like a rifle, but is balanced in a way that it can be thrown as well, or maybe even better.  Or if lots of different looking pieces of equipment could be fashioned to look like lots of different things, so as to fit shows, while still being balanced to be thrown.  

 While difficult to do, I'd recommend that instead of tossing rifles in Drum Corps any more, we toss a salad.

 Its far better than rifles, imo, for sustaining a well balanced, healthy lifestyle.

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