Drum Corps On The Big And Small Screens

We’ve been pretty fortunate over the past few years to have some great exposure for the drum corps activity. In 2013, we saw the release of Scouts Honor: Inside a Marching Brotherhood, a documentary featuring the Madison Scouts. This year, the Fuse Network is broadcasting Clash of the Corps, a reality show following the Blue Devils and the Cadets during this past season, produced by Dwayne “The Rock” Johnson.

With the broadcast of Clash of the Corps and the recent release of Scouts Honor on iTunes, I’ve had the opportunity and honor to interview some of the key participants in each production. For Clash of the Corps, Catie Toal, a member of the Blue Devils color guard, and Kobina Sampson-Davis, a trumpet player with the Cadets, gave me some insight into their experience while having camera crews on tour during the season:

Having the TV crew was an absolute blast this summer. I got to personally know many of the people that filmed and producers and I just fell in love with how committed they were to getting this “right.” They were constantly asking questions and determined to learn what it is we do every day in Drum Corps and why we do it. They were kind with giving us our space, they never came into where we were sleeping such as gyms, but filmed most of what we would do on and off the field. I loved that they filmed simple things like lunch breaks, because sometimes that is the best part of Drum Corps. Enjoying the company of the people you love in the most simplest of ways, not to mention to most comical moments and a lifetime worth of laughter that Drum Corps produces. I have honestly never laughed as much as I did this summer. Working with my peers and the staff created some incredible moments, and I feel very blessed that the camera crew caught some of that to share with the world.

— Catie Toal

You can read the full interview with Catie and Kobina on Drum Corps Planet.

For Scouts Honor, I focused on Mac Smith of Gigantic Cranium, one of the producers of the film, and the key events which led to the creation of the documentary:

The first came in 2009. While working at Skywalker Sound, Mac was pulled into a recording studio by John “JT” Torrijos. John had been making recordings of drum corps performances since 2007 with the goal of making the recorded performances sound just as good as the live experience. In ‘09, JT was brought in by Drum Corps International to record the DCI West regional performances for release as Audio Performance Downloads. Mac heard the magic JT had worked in making 5.1 recordings of the Blue Devils and Santa Clara Vanguard and realized that this high quality experience would be incredible in a movie theater.

You can read the full Scouts Honor article on Drum Corps Planet

We drum corps fans can definitely enjoy seeing the activity we love become more mainstream!

Clash of the Corps airs on the Fuse Network every Wednesday evening at 11PM Eastern.

Scouts Honor is available on DVD and Blu-Ray as well as for digital download and rent on iTunes.