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Watch the Video Vault for free until the DCE Championships 2016

Lun, 19/09/2016 - 01:44

Anyone who subscribes to the DCE Video Vault now, can watch for free over the coming weeks. This is the result of a promotion in the lead up to the 5000th like on Facebook.

Those who sign up to the DCE Video Vault now will get a special discount code that makes all of the videos available in full. The DCE Video Vault contains hundreds of videos. This does not just include recent videos either, as the archive dates back to 2003, when Drum Corps Europe first organised their 'outdoor' championships.

To create a free account, go to http://videovault.eu/dce/videoregister.php. Select the Video Vault subscription for € 19.95. Then enter the coupon code 5000LIKES, which will open the Video Vault. From the day of the DCE Championships, the DCE Video Vault will once again be available to paying subscribers only.

DCE publishes Championships schedule

Lun, 19/09/2016 - 00:37

The order of performances for the Premier Class Prelims and Junior Class Finals this Saturday has been published, based on this season's results at the European Music Games. The list is as follows.

Premier Class Prelims
10.05 - The Vikings
10.23 - Blue Diamonds
10.41 - Calypso
10.59 - Millennium
11.17 - Beeches
11.35 - Revolution
11.53 - Cadence
12.45 - Wölper Löwen
13.03 - Unity
13.21 - Spirit of 52
13.39 - Starriders
13.57 - Juliana
14.15 - Jubal
14.32 - Kidsgrove Scouts
14.49 - The Company

Junior Class Finals
15.15 - Kadoudal
15.32 - Diamond Cadets
15.49 - Jong-Holland Junioren
16.06 - Johan Friso
16.23 - Jong Beatrix
16.40 - Jong Jubal

More information can be found here. No tickets yet? Order your tickets today at www.drumcorpseurope.org/tickets.

The Company and Concord are the 2016 DCUK Champions

Dom, 18/09/2016 - 01:41

The Company are the 2016 Drum Corps United Kingdom Open Class Champions. The performance ensemble scored 85.40 points in Widnes on Saturday and also won all caption awards. The Concord Allstars are DCUK Junior Class Champions.

It was an exciting day in Widnes. In the afternoon, The Company incurred 0.9 penalties,. The Kidsgrove Scouts won the Prelims with a difference of 0.05 points. In the evening, The Company scored 85.40, while the Kidsgrove Scouts received a score of 83.20.

It is clear that 'Inspire Me' by The Company and 'Symmetricity' by the Kidsgrove Scouts are two completely different programmes, allowing the audience to be presented with a wide variety of show concepts. But the other corps also provided plenty of variety, such as Cadence, whose show 'Arcana' combined 'Smells Like Teen Spirit' by Nirvana with 'Danse Macabre' by Camille Saint-Saens. They came third (66.90).

East Coast Elite came close to Cadence. ECE improved on their Prelims score in the evening by 2.5 points, and scored 66.30 points in the Finals. Revolution came fifth (62.90), followed by Beeches (62.75), Phantom Knights (54.75) The Pacemakers (53.80) and Liberty (49.60). The Concord Allstars were the only participant in the Junior Class (59.00), and are the Junior Class Champions.

The Company, Kidsgrove Scouts, Cadence, Revolution and Beeches will be travelling to Kerkrade this week to participate in the DCE European Championships, along with sixteen other groups from seven different countries.

Live webcast of DCUK Finals

Ven, 16/09/2016 - 20:02

This year, for the first time in its history, there will be a live webcast of the DCUK Finals, free of charge. The webcast will be available through the UK Fan Network website.

Starting at 5.45pm (UK BST), DCUK will bring all 10 championship performances as well as the Drumline Battle Final and the final scores. The first DCUK live event will be hosted by Joe Fitzpatrick and Michelle Vaughan. So if you can’t be in Widnes this Saturday then you van join 'DCUK Live' on the internet.

The UK Fan Network can be found at www.ukfannetwork.org.

Jubal and Jong Jubal win gold at DCN Championships

Gio, 15/09/2016 - 02:06

Jubal and Jong Jubal were crowned DCN champions in Dordrecht on Saturday. It was the fourth time in a row that Jubal took home the title. In addition, the corps won awards in all but two captions.

'The Next Ten Minutes' by Jubal were found to be 'The Best Ten Minutes' of the day. The judges awarded the performance a score of 82.40 points, which led to the lead position in the European Music Games ranking. Juliana was a deserving second place with 'Poisoned', scoring 78.20, and also won the award for best Front Ensemble. However, the corps from Middelburg will be looking over their shoulder to their colleagues from Bad Münder. The Starriders managed to close the gap to the number two place quite substantially since the contest in Huizen, from 4.6 to just 1.7 points (76.5). Aside from winning bronze, the Starriders also won the High Auxiliary Award with their show 'About Time'.

Spirit of 52 came fourth and even came in second place on Field Music. The show 'Out of the Dark?' went from 69.75 to 72.1 points within a week, closing the gap with the number three and increasing their lead on the number five, Wölper Löwen. The judges awarded 69.40 points to Wölper Löwen’s show, 'Guardian Angel'. Calypso from Zwevegem debuted in Dordrecht with an excellent sixth place (60.4). The Belgians will also be performing their show 'Colours of Friendship' at the DCE European Championships in Kerkrade, after several years of absence.

'Dr. Frankenstein' by the Blue Diamonds reached seventh place with 59.0 points, but was not far off Calypso’s score. It will therefore still be an exciting battle in Kerkrade. The only participant in the DCN Championships that we unfortunately will not see in Kerkrade is Jong-Holland. The corps from Zwijndrecht, which was seen last year in Kerkrade, performed their show 'Krimonai' on the contest field for the last time this year. Jong-Holland came eighth with 55.10 points.

In the Junior Class, Jong Jubal took the title from Johan Friso. The 76.15 points were not only sufficient for victory, but also for the lead in the European rankings. What’s more, all caption awards were awarded to Jubal's younger brother. Jong Beatrix came second (74.45), Johan Friso third (72.30) and the Jong-Holland Junioren fourth (67.35).

The logo of the DCE Championships 2016!

Mar, 13/09/2016 - 00:36

Like in previous years, the DCE Championships will have its own logo. Peter Franken has produced a new and fresh design, without leaving the style that distinguishes the championships' logos since 2008.

As always, the stars mark the European identity of the championships, and there is also the green of the competition field and obviously the DCE logo: all this makes it instantly recognizable, although the design has been entirely revised. Peter Franken is the designer of many DCE related logos, including the ones for the European Music Games, Indoor Music Games and Video Vault. Like always, drum corps fans can obtain the logo as a patch, available from the stand of the Drum Corps Europe located at the entrance of the stadium on Championships day.

Haven't ordered your DCE tickets yet? Hurry up! Super seats and sections A, B and C are already sold out, but tickets for sections D, E and F are still available. Your ticket will be the gateway to 33 fantastic show performances from 21 groups representing 7 European countries.

Click here to buy your ticket today!

Vikings win Irish Championships

Lun, 12/09/2016 - 21:40

Vikings Drum Corps are the Irish champions again after their win in Dalymount Park, Dublin on Saturday.

Vikings jumped more than 4 points since their last contest and narrowly came ahead of second place Celtic Crusaders. Vikings will next take their 2016 production “Hydro” to Kerkrade and take part in the DCE Championships on September 24th.

Celtic Crusaders had won the previous contest and illustrated their “On a String” theme very well, with percussionists downing their instruments temporarily to “control” the colour guard as dolls on a string. Their show featured original music and arrangements by Christina Perri, David Hodges and Bob Dylan.

Inbhear Mor Performance Ensemble put on a very crowd pleasing show with “Magic”. Both the music and visual show got a fantastic reception from the audience, and some of the “Magic” included part of the show being performed blindfolded and the entire corps disappearing as a finale!

Clondalkin Youth Bands show “The Book” told the story of the importance of the Book of Kells in Irish history and the extent that the monks went to protect the book. The group portrayed the story very well and also picked up the caption award for best colour guard.

All videos from the Irish Championships can be seen on the DCE Video Vault. The IMBA will announce details of their winter programme in the coming days and you can keep up to date on their Facebook page.

Scores from the IMBA Championships:
Vikings Drum Corps – 56.05
Celtic Crusaders – 55.65
Inbhear Mor Performance Ensemble – 55.00
Clondalkin Youth Band – 53.70

TMB members work with legendary duo Ant and Dec

Gio, 08/09/2016 - 02:12

After being contacted in March 2016, the final edits of the brand new Suzuki surprise advert that Thurrock Marching Brass members have worked on with the legendary dynamic duo Ant & Dec is very close to being released.

Not only is this bringing fantastic awareness for the marching band and drum corps movement here in the UK, as well as a brilliantly fun experience for all involved too but it also highlights just how fantastically talented the kids of this great borough really are when they are given the right surroundings to thrive in.

It's been an exciting and busy year for the youngsters already, and September sees them prepare themselves for the 2016 British Youth Band Association Cadet Class Championships on 1st October in Telford. It would be great to have the whole borough getting behind them as always.

The full advert will first air on prime time television during the X-Factor on Saturday 10 September 2016.

"Thurrock Marching Brass would like to thank MBAUK for the initial lead and would like to extend their sincere thanks to Suzuki Cars UK, to ITN Productions and to Ant & Dec for giving the members an amazing experience that they will remember for a lifetime", Paul Morgan from Thurrock said.

Here is a little teaser:

Starriders, Blue Bandits and Jong Beatrix win in Hameln

Mer, 07/09/2016 - 01:19

The drum corps month of the year started with a big bang on Saturday. In front of a full stand in Hamelin, the Starriders, Blue Bandits and Jong Beatrix won the German Open.

The Starriders scored 74.90 points, prolonging their title in the Premier Class. Spirit of 52 came second (69.75), while the Wölper Löwen finished just 1.15 points behind the number two (68.55). The Blue Diamonds finished fourth (58.40) and The Devils came fifth (48.65).

In the Concert Class, the Blue Bandits were given the highest honour. With 63.40 points, the group scored well above the competition, which consisted of Flying Drums (55.30), Brass & Drum Corps Kriftel (53.60), Red Stars (48.60), Carpe Diem (41.30) and Phoenix (40.50).

Jong Beatrix from The Netherlands went home with the German Open title in the Cadet Class for the second time. The group from Hilversum scored 71.80 points. The Diamond Cadets came second (61.50 and Rastede Youngstars came third (45.55).

The German Open was the start of a busy month with many national championships, plus the DCE European Championships to close the European Music Games.

Blue Devils staff join Kidsgrove Scouts

Mar, 06/09/2016 - 02:17

Some days ago the Kidsgrove Scouts have made an important announcement: three members of the Blue Devils A (Concord, CA) will fly from the USA to Kidsgrove in order to help the Scouts during the Finals week, on the road to the DCE European Championship (Kerkrade, September 24th). Here below the entire statement.

Kidsgrove Scouts are extremely excited to welcome Blue Devils Drum & Bugle Corps staff for the culmination of the 2016 season. John Meehan (Brass Caption Head & Arranger), Brian Dinkel (Front Ensemble Technician) and Brandon Wickham (Visual Technician) will travel to Europe to meet up and work with the corps through to the Drum Corps Europe (official) Championships.

This is another development through the wonderful partnership created with System Blue. Kidsgrove members and staff are so excited to have such wonderful, talented educators coming to work with us. Also we would like to thank Al Murray and the great team at System Blue, they have been there for us throughout the summer and continue to amaze us all with their work and support.

Corps Director, Rob Swindells, commented. “John has been in contact with us from the very start of the System Blue deal. As soon as we talked about the possibility of having himself and other BD staff over to help us we were both keen to make it work. We are so grateful and massively excited to embrace this opportunity. Massive thanks to the three of them.”

More information can be found here.

Starriders, Blue Bandits and Jong Beatrix win in Hameln

Mar, 06/09/2016 - 01:19

The drum corps month of the year started with a big bang on Saturday. In front of a full stand in Hamelin, the Starriders, Blue Bandits and Jong Beatrix won the German Open.

The Starriders scored 74.90 points, prolonging their title in the Premier Class. Spirit of 52 came second (69.75), while the Wölper Löwen finished just 1.15 points behind the number two (68.55). The Blue Diamonds finished fourth (58.40) and The Devils came fifth (48.65).

In the Concert Class, the Blue Bandits were given the highest honour. With 63.40 points, the group scored well above the competition, which consisted of Flying Drums (55.30), Brass & Drum Corps Kriftel (53.60), Red Stars (48.60), Carpe Diem (41.30) and Phoenix (40.50).

Jong Beatrix from The Netherlands went home with the German Open title in the Cadet Class for the second time. The group from Hilversum scored 71.80 points. The Diamond Cadets came second (61.50 and Rastede Youngstars came third (45.55).

The German Open was the start of a busy month with many national championships, plus the DCE European Championships to close the European Music Games.

International instructors at Kadoudal’s Summer Camp

Lun, 29/08/2016 - 23:08

Kadoudal has just finished their Summer Camp which was held in their home town Quiberon between 22nd and 25th August. The camp was run by international instructors.

The European staff during the Summer Camp consisted of Fabian Lippmann (Germany), Christy de Vries (Netherlands), Ludovic Sueur (France), and Benjamin Vandemoortele (France). Next month, Kadoudal attend the DCE Championships for the sixth time in its history, they will enter the Junior Class to compete against the best European junior corps.

Corps director Yvan Boscher is very pleased with the progress that the Kadoudal members showed during the camp. "We have been working for two years on our show 'Samurai'. Kadoudal will be proud to represent France at this great competition of Drum Corps Europe."

DrumLine Battle returns to DCUK Championships

Gio, 25/08/2016 - 00:38

Following the success of the DrumLine Battle held at the 2015 British Drum Corps Championships, Drum Corps United Kingdom have announced that for the 2016 Championships the event will be expanded to enable double the number of performing teams to take part.

This year there will 8 drum lines battling it out with the 4 heats and 2 semi-finals scheduled to take place during the afternoon at the Select Security Stadium in Widnes on Saturday 17th September. The winners of the two semi-finals will then go head to head later in the day on the arena in the stadium under the floodlights. This 'final' will take before the British Championships Results Ceremony - following the last competing Corps performance in the Open Class Finals event.

Making this announcement Alan Thompson, on behalf of DCUK, said "The excitement generated at last year’s Battle made it an easy decision to make 2016 bigger and better and opening it up to more teams just seemed a nature progression. This year’s event will be something not to be missed".

According to DCI’s John DeNovi, co-founder of DrumLine Battle, "We're very pleased to have such outstanding support from our partners at Drum Corps United Kingdom. The remarkable expansion of DrumLine Battle events in the UK signals even bigger things to come as drummers from around the globe work to create entertaining, high-energy performances showcased on an international stage."

Full details of this exciting spectacle will be published in early September and DCUK are now looking for drum lines to register to take part. The event is open to ANY drum line (not only DCUK members) that wish to register and they should contact DCUK at dlb@dcuk.org.uk to obtain further information.

Celtic Crusaders win at home in Mullingar

Lun, 22/08/2016 - 09:16

Celtic Crusaders were the stand-out performance of the day. Their 2016 production “On a String” had much advanced since the Arklow contest and scored 53.70.

Four corps are taking part in the Premier Class in Ireland this year and the scoring remained very close with still only three points separating all four in Mullingar, just ahead of the Irish championships finals, which take place in Dublin in three weeks.

Adverse weather conditions put the show at risk of complete cancellation on Saturday evening when it became evident that the Downs GAA venue was waterlogged and not useable. Local organisers and IMBA officials secured an alternative venue but were forced to make the difficult decision to run the event behind closed doors due to health and safety and insurance concerns. 

IMBA council member Kevin Morgan: “It was extremely disappointing, particularly for the Mullingar Town Band who had put in an extraordinary amount of organisational work for what promised to be a great family day in a fantastic venue.”

After the closed event, Mullingar Town Band Director Kim Magee thanked St Lomans GAA club for providing an alternative venue at short notice and also thanked all sponsors, parents and supporters of Mullingar Town Band for their support.

Kevin Morgan (IMBA): “We needed to ensure that our member bands got the opportunity to perform and receive the judges comments. It was very unfortunate that the local event suffered as a result of the weather but we would like to thank all our member bands for being so understanding and continuing with a much pared back show.” 

The scores from Mullingar:
Celtic Crusaders (53.70)
Vikings Drum Corps (51.85)
Inbhear Mor Performance Ensemble (50.55)
Clondalkin Youth Band (50.35)

The IMBA championships take place in Dalymount Park, Dublin on September 10th.

Celtic Crusaders win at home in Mullingar

Lun, 22/08/2016 - 09:06

Four corps are taking part in the Premier Class in Ireland this year and the scoring remained very close with still only three points separating all four in Mullingar, just ahead of the Irish championships finals, which take place in Dublin in three weeks.

Adverse weather conditions put the show at risk of complete cancellation on Saturday evening when it became evident that the Downs GAA venue was waterlogged and not useable. Local organisers and IMBA officials secured an alternative venue but were forced to make the difficult decision to run the event behind closed doors due to health and safety and insurance concerns.

IMBA council member Kevin Morgan: “It was extremely disappointing, particularly for the Mullingar Town Band who had put in an extraordinary amount of organisational work for what promised to be a great family day in a fantastic venue.”

After the closed event, Mullingar Town Band Director Kim Magee thanked St Lomans GAA club for providing an alternative venue at short notice and also thanked all sponsors, parents and supporters of Mullingar Town Band for their support.

Kevin Morgan (IMBA): “We needed to ensure that our member bands got the opportunity to perform and receive the judges comments. It was very unfortunate that the local event suffered as a result of the weather but we would like to thank all our member bands for being so understanding and continuing with a much pared back show.”

The scores from Mullingar:

Celtic Crusaders (53.70)

Vikings Drum Corps (51.85)

Inbhear Mor Performance Ensemble (50.55)

Clondalkin Youth Band (50.35)

The IMBA championships take place in Dalymount Park, Dublin on September 10th.  

European Music Games to continue in Ireland this Sunday

Mer, 17/08/2016 - 07:20

Four corps from around Ireland will take part, including Vikings Drum Corps, Clondalkin Youth Band, Inbhear Mor Performance Ensemble and the contest hosts, Celtic Crusaders.

It is the first time Celtic Crusaders will host a contest in Ireland in five years, and the free event has been attracting a lot of interest locally. Mullingar Town Band Director Kim Magee: “"We have not held an IMBA competition in five years due to travel and other banding commitments. We are hosting at The Downs GAA club grounds. The club have completed construction of a fantastic viewing stand, so we are really looking forward to bringing IMBA back to Mullingar in August."

The return to competition comes during an exciting week in Ireland, as former Clonmel Bluehawks member Shayne O'Brien celebrated winning the DCI World Championships with The Bluecoats. While Shayne isn't the first from Ireland to march DCI, he is the first to march with the World Championship winning corp. The IMBA congratulated him on the fantastic achievement earlier this week.

The Mullingar contest takes place on Sunday August 21st from 14.00 GMT.

DCE will post updates from the venue on our facebook page. 

We are taking a short break from news updates

Sab, 30/07/2016 - 23:10

Due to holiday plans and low staffing in the news room, there will be a short break from news updates on the Drum Corps Europe website.

The news room provides daily coverage of developments and related activities. Due to the summer holidays and the low staffing, we will not be able to publish new items for a while. Of course we will continue our news updates with enthusiasm after the break. If we get a chance to post any news items in the meantime, we will make sure we do so.

The break is partly necessary because we have a small news team. We would love to expand our staff! If you have a keen interest in journalism, know the basic principles of writing news stories, and you like to help us bringing drum corps news to the attention of thousands of people, please e-mail us your CV at info@drumcorpseurope.org.

See you soon, and have a nice Summer!

Brianza steps into indoor winds, percussion and guard

Ven, 29/07/2016 - 08:53

Brianza Parade Band from Veduggio con Colzano has plans to enter the arena of indoor winds, indoor percussion and winter guard of Color Guard Netherlands as part of a big process of growth. Therefore Brianza is looking for a professional tech and choreographer for the color guard section.

“We are working hard to make the participation in CGN possible for the coming season", says Band Director Nicola Esposito. "In order to make this happen we definitely need to fill all the missing spots in our staff team. Our actual group of color guards is composed by 12 very hard working girls who deserve to be driven to achieve their best possible level of technical consciousness and performance. We are looking for a passionate and competent person who would like to be involved in a great project of growth. The group is young, disciplined and very polite, and all our members have the desire to have fun and learn as much as possible. I think this is a very good starting point for an instructor who wants to deliver great work."

It's easy to fly to Veduggio, which is close to the two Milan airports (Linate and Malpensa), and also to Orio al Serio’s one. All the expenses are covered by the group.

Brianza is looking for someone with international experience in the color guard activity, with a good track record in teaching, the sincere volition to be protagonist of a growth process and the curiosity to be in touch with people from a different culture, and from a different country. "We consider the diversity as a resource. I can guarantee that it will be a lot of work, but with a lot of fun and great satisfaction", the Band Director said.

Report on DCUK Leicester contest

Sab, 23/07/2016 - 03:03

A Sunday afternoon in July, Leicester (home of the Premier League champions), Saffron Lane, an iconic venue and a glorious sun drenched summers day could only mean one thing. Yep that’s right. It must be a Drum Corps show in the Midlands to bring the curtain down the the first half of the DCUK season before the summer break.

A report by Jethro Edwards, courtesy Drum Corps United Kingdom.

Whilst driving along Saffron Lane on the way to the stadium I passed the park where there were the usual Three or Four Corps already set up and waiting to start playing. From my own past experience I’m sure one or two of them might well have sent their advance truck crews to the park the night before to claim the best rehearsal spots at this legendary rehearsal site.

So on to the stadium itself, not to the old Velodrome as many old timers would remember with a sense of both fear and joy in equal measure but to the athletics stadium next door. The stadium itself affords the spectator a large stand with a great viewing angle and although there is a six lane running track this does little or nothing to detract from the Corps performances throughout the day. In fact I’d venture to say that the environmental conditions and acoustic properties of the stand actually enhanced the spectator experience particularly in the case of the junior class and emerging corps in the Open Class.

With ten performances to look forward to which consisted of one in Junior Class and nine in the Open Class including a very welcome addition to the line up in terms of Spirit of 52 form Germany the scene was set and I settled into my seat ready for the get go.

First on the field to set the tone for the day was the only competitor in the Junior Class today The Concord Allstars (1st - Junior Cass) from Sheffield, South Yorkshire with their Show entitled “Viva Las Vegas”. Well this show took us through musical classics from “Luck be a Lady” from “Guys and Dolls” to Queens “It’s a kind of Magic” Off the line we were treated to some great performances from the members of this established organisations young members who were certainly enjoying themselves and in turn thoroughly entertaining the audience with their fine performances.

So onto the Open Class and first on today were Liberty (9th - Open Class) from Northampton under the direction and Drum Majorship (if that’s a word) of Mr Dale Willis. The Show for 2016 is entitled “The Despicable Murder of Trixie Malone. Some great musical choices including “King of the Swingers” this group followed the narrative that the show theme title suggests. The costumes this team are wearing this season perfectly suits the show concept and the show has more than a few similarities to the famous film starring Jodi Foster and Scott Baio.

Our second Corps in the Open Class the Phantom Knights (8th - Open Class) from Warwickshire took to the field in their familiar blue and white uniforms looking in fine form and one could sense that we were in for a treat today from this group. Their 2016 production is simply called “Phobias”. The title in itself might be enough to send shivers down many a spine as this Corps explored the fear of Spiders, open Spaces, Masks, enclosed space and last but not least death. The interesting musical choices chosen to portray these motifs included music form the film Beatlejuce and Kashmir by Led Zeppelin. This was a solid and polished performance for this stage of the season and I am sure there is more to come for this established but young corps during the rest of the season.

Performing their 2016 production and show “Under the Canopy” saw Revolution Show Corps (7th - Open Class) take to the field. Michael Jackson “Earth Song” got us underway and what a cool piece it is. One of my particular all time favourites “Puma” was performed with style, class and balance and in particular this piece brought pace and variation to the show and like other team performing today this show will surely develop and become stronger with reps and rehearsal time to give the young member even more confidence and projection in their performance.

East Coast Elite (5th - Open Class) were up next. I’ve said it before and I’ll say it again, I know it’s only my opinion but I love this Corps Uniform. The shade of Purple, the Silver flashes, the helmets, and it all comes together with great effect, style and presence. This team have continually grown in stature over the last few years and their 2016 show “We are gathered here today” is another step in the right direction. From the musical choices to the Props and general flow this is a show that has it all. From Pachelbel to Bach and onto Felix Mendelssohn’s wedding march the program didn’t need too much explaining in terms of its concept, Clear? yes, Precise? Yes, but still with intellectual properties and nuances? Yes. Great job ECE.

With their Show entitled “Aqua” Beeches PE (6th - Open Class) took to the field,. Straight away the 2016 new uniforms set the scene perfectly and the props positioned on the rear midfield enhance the overall picture right from the start. This is a group where the musical arrangements are a great fit to the talent levels of the performers throughout each section. It is clear that the writers understand the capabilities of the group and write accordingly which allows the performers to be challenged but at the same time capable of playing and performing the show to a high standard. Far too often we see young people being pushed to play musical pieces far in advance of their capabilities and thus lacking in confidence and competency but not with Beeches PE, Spot on and congratulations all round in the department.

After the break it seemed as if the audience had swelled in number even further. Now I’m sure the audience number increase was due to all the members of the corps who had already performed deciding to watch the last four Corps in action. Well either that or maybe the Pokemon gods had decided to place a rare “Arcanine” Pokemon in the stand which was mistaken for the theme of the next schedules Corps show “Arcana”. Anyways the stand was full and the show was ready to recommence.

Cadence Drum and Bugle Corps (4th - Open Class) from Guildford, Surrey received an extremely warm welcome onto the field to ready themselves to perform their 2016 show entitled “Arcana”. This Corps is another group that has made significant progress whilst staying true to their core values in recent years. Their choice of music program included pieces by Philip Glass, Beethoven and Stravinsky amongst others which helped them recount the mystery and projections of the Tarot reader, Five movements, five Cards, Five outcomes. This Groups show is developing at a fast pace and I am sure that this is one of those that has a lot more to come as we move towards the second half of the season.

It’s not often we have the pleasure of being able to welcome groups from mainland Europe to shows in the UK during the season so what a treat it was to see Spirit of 52 (3rd - Open Class) from Rastede, Germany make the trip to perform for us here and what a job they did on the Field with their show “Out of the Dark” An extremely strong and evocative concept began with the scene being set with just the front ensemble visible on the field and a heavy sinister electronic sound effect creating a dark menacing feel and then entering stage right running onto the field in character came the the Guard, Brass and Battery gradually building to a wonderful hit that was tight clean and extremely effective. The show feature individual characters throughout the show to portray the narrative which worked well and kept the audience engaged and entertained. I for one am hoping that this group along with others from the near continent decide to come back to the UK in the future for more of the same.

Next up and seeded second in the current UK rankings were The Kidsgrove Scouts (2nd - Open Class). Under the Direction of their Corps Director Rob Swindells and led today by their Drum Major Kerrie Brett the Scouts entered the field and readied themselves for a big show. These guys were out to put in a good run today and boy did they ever. Off the line we were treated to an arrangement of Beethoven's 5th Symphony that was so loud and awesome the great composer himself would have been able to hear in all its glory. A rock solid and oh so powerful horn section which was well supported by a more than competent battery and front ensemble. The Colour Guard looked resplendent in costumes with more than a little Dutch orange on them they performed with the force and energy that we have all come to expect from this great team. From the classical to the modern we then moved into “Welcome to Cuba” with flair and aplomb and more than a little Kidsgrove swagger, In all the Scouts were on it today I thought they had a great run and it was going to take something special to beat them.

The final Corps to take the field today were The Company (1st - Open Class) from Chesterfield with the show entitled “Inspire me”. Well from the very beginning with the words “White a blank page or canvas” this team were slick, tight and crisp. The show is built around some great original compositions which are complemented with selections from “Sunday in the park with George” and has a flow, a tempo and pacing throughout the visual and musical design that’s truly inspiring. The use of the electronic effects particularly with the reverb though the featured artists on the mini staging worked well with the Trumpet, Flugelhorn and in particular the Mellophone solo which I think from a personal perspective could have been a little bit longer but all so beautifully played and balanced. I was impressed with the subtle way in which the colour palette on the props, screens and silks changed almost without notice until complete which is testament to the design team in terms intention and design focus. All in all this is a great show and without doubt will be a strong contender leading into the final furlong of the season as we head towards championships.

So there it is a short review of the performances from one individual’s perspective. It wouldn’t however be right if I didn’t make mention and reference to what was at the end of the day a fantastically run event pay tribute to the teams of helpers, staff and organisers who worked so hard from manning the catering trailer which served up some fantastic fair I have to say, to the judges and marshals, the 50/50 ticket sellers to the lifters and shifters form all the corps. Top Job you all made my day one to remember.

Vikings win in Ireland

Lun, 18/07/2016 - 02:22

The Irish season got underway in Arklow Co.Wicklow on Saturday July 16th. Four corps took part in in the first competition in Arklow Celtic football club.

Vikings Drum Corps came out on top in the IMBA Premier Class with a score of 48.90 for their 2016 production 'Hydro'. Vikings had dominated in Ireland for a number of years, until last year when they failed to secure a win. With less than three points separating all four corps in the Arklow contest, it is much too early to predict if they can stay at the top this year.

Clondalkin Youth Band were placed second with a score of 47.65. Their show 'The Book' told the story of the importance of the Book of Kells and depicted efforts to protect it at times during Irelands history.

Celtic Crusaders were placed in third (46.50) with their 2016 production 'On a String'. Hosts Inbhear Mor Performance Ensemble closed the show in fantastic style with an upbeat show 'Magic'. It portrayed the theme very well and even featured a movement which was performed blind-folded, which was received very well by the large audience in Arklow. Inbhear Mor scored 45.95.

The next contest in Ireland will take place in Mullingar on August 21st.

Pagine