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Some answered questions about Cadets2

Director Eric Kitchenman outlines what to expect from the new drum corps

The Cadets2 (pronounced “Cadets Two”) is certainly a new direction for The Cadets and YEA!, and we want to make sure potential members know what to expect from this brand new drum corps. Here are the answers to some common questions about The Cadets2.

What group(s) of young people does The Cadets2 intend to draw? How does this differ from The Cadets' demographic?

The Cadets2 Director Eric Kitchenman said that while younger members are certainly a focus, The Cadets2 is not just a feeder corps for The Cadets. “The age range for The Cadets2 is 16 to 25,” Kitchenman said. “Our primary target is high school musicians and colorguard members. That said, you can see by the age range that we are also looking for competent leadership from members who have recently marched with The Cadets. We want to infuse the program with that rich heritage.”

cadets2 logo

This is a way to graft more young people into The Cadets’ tradition of excellence, even if they can’t give up a whole summer to tour the country, or their age doesn’t fit into Drum Corps International’s requirements. “The age aggregate of The Cadets national touring ensemble is usually about 20.5. The Cadets2 is also an outlet for college-age men and women who are challenged either by resources or time and cannot devote themselves to the full 90-day tour of The Cadets,” Kitchenman said.

This is a unique undertaking, but the goal is to offer the Cadet brand to a broader range of participants by making it obtainable for more people both younger and older.

What is the time commitment for The Cadets2? Will the corps tour at all?

The Cadets2 is a weekend-only regional ensemble, which means the corps will rehearse and perform only on the weekends. Unlike members of The Cadets, “this will afford our members to make alternative choices throughout the summer months,” Kitchenman said. “Some will choose to work and some will choose to take summer courses.”

The corps will perform on the East Coast in the mid-Atlantic region and will be competitive in the Drum Corps Associates circuit. “There are several occasions where The Cadets2 will be able to appear with The Cadets,” Kitchenman said. “Summer plans are a work in progress at this stage. Suffice to say that this summer is going to a very unique adventure for 128 young men and women!”

Has the staff been decided for The Cadets2?

As previously stated, The Cadets and The Cadets2 will share a design team, which is a fantastic opportunity for the members of this new corps. Kitchenman said that The Cadets’ Brass Caption Supervisor Gino Cipriani will also lead the brass team for The Cadets2.

“We are presently negotiating details with several candidates for various staff positions,” Kitchenman said. “Rich Hammond will be coordinating the staff and design process, and George Hopkins will consult at all levels of the program. We are in the process of finalizing a few more positions and we will be announcing those in the near future.”

How can potential members prepare for a successful audition for The Cadets2?

As of Monday, Oct. 10, anyone interested has access to a very comprehensive audition packet on The Cadets2 homepage. It includes a step-by-step guide on how to approach auditions and contains all the necessary information and audition material.

“The more familiar you are with the audition packet, the better your outcome will be at the audition,” Kitchenman said. It’s that simple. “We want to fill 128 positions with committed performers, and we’re looking for dedication and talent.”

Throughout the auditioning process, The Cadets2 staff will take note of how each student progresses and whether they exhibit the ability and dedication to reach new levels of excellence. “It’s a step-by-step process, and it begins with the belief that you are ready for something quite extraordinary in your life: becoming a Cadet!” Kitchenman said.

What do members of this corps have to look forward to in 2012?

“This drum corps experience is not only in its inaugural flight; it is also surrounded by rich tradition this is a very unique formula,” Kitchenman said. “A summer of weekend fun, a new community at the inception of a program, thousands of excited fans looking forward to The Cadets’ second drum corps. History is what to look forward to in 2012!”

The YEA! mission statement is the cornerstone of The Cadets2: “To support the development of young people into magnificent human beings through participation in the performing arts.” “We believe that this experience will not only be the highest standard of performance for this weekend drum corps, but also a very real opportunity to fine-tune and enhance life skills,” Kitchenman said. “Our drum corps community affords a platform for young adults to grow in self-discipline and learn the steps necessary to achieve major life goals. The instruction will be there for them, and the tools will be there for them. This is one of the primary goals of Executive Director George Hopkins.”

For Eric Kitchenman, this is an exciting new chapter in a life-long drum corps career. “I have been blessed to be involved with drum corps my whole life,” he said. “Since coming on board with The Cadets in 2007 and then moving into a position at YEA!, I have had nothing but admiration for what this organization brings and the remarkable work ethic it inspires. From drum corps, to marching band, to inner-city youth, the impact is immeasurable. This organization is about great people who know how to do drum corps and the pageantry arts at the highest level. From the office staff, to drum corps staff, to volunteers, this community is awe-inspiring! This is a very exciting time to be involved with this organization and team. The adventure is about to begin, so get on board and ride the wave!”


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