First DCI Tournament of Champions show a success

Angel and Demon Diary: Cadets daily updates from the road


Yesterday was another hot day in the Midwest for The Cadets, and they toughed it out all the way through the end of ensemble at 4:45 p.m.

Gino Cipriani left tour yesterday for a while, so Percussion Caption Supervisor Colin McNutt is now running ensemble rehearsals. “I think it’s great for the kids to have different staff in front of them sometimes. They get a fresh perspective,” Colin said. “When he was here, I told Gino to get to know the drums. It’s good for everybody.”

Colin said his goal in rehearsal is to increase the corps’ endurance so that they become masters of their show. “We’re doing great, but right now we’re riding on our design a little bit,” he said. “When we run small chunks of the show, we sound immaculate, and it always takes a while for the corps to get to the point where they just push through no matter what. The way to build endurance is to break the show down into smaller chunks to clean it, then run a big chunk a few times so they get used to that.”

After ensemble, Rudy took the bass drum section and the “William Tell” sextet to the stadium early. The Rockford show was the first Tournament of Champions show in DCI history, and each corps was responsible for providing two small ensembles to perform twice each as fans arrived, browsed through souvenirs and enjoyed the snack stands.


Once the competition started, each of the top eight corps performed an instant encore after their show. This is another way DCI sought to engage the audience and make their drum corps experience more interactive. It also gave fans a chance to see a bit more of each corps’ personality and tradition.


The Cadets performed last at around 10:15 p.m., and they fought through the rough field and fatigue of the long day. As soon as they finished, they set up the arc and played “William Tell” (with “Moondance”) and “Don’t Stop Believing.” It was fun to watch the audience enjoy the encore, especially the dancing children in the stands.


When The Cadets finished, all of the corps took the field again for a mass encore before the scores were annouced. The top eight drum corps performing together was quite the sight and sound.


“Drum corps had to reestablish their fan base, and I think this helped to accomplish that,” Colin said regarding the Tournament of Champions (TOC) show set-up. “It’s a wonderful event that creates more interest and develops the fan base.”


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