Alumni corps line-up set for Scranton DCA weekend

by Tom Peashey, DCA PR

Drum Corps Associates has sent invitations to 10 organizations, asking them to participate in the 2004 “Alumni Spectacular” during the world championship weekend, September 3-5 in Scranton, PA.

The groups that will appear include the Syracuse Brigadiers Alumni, Syracuse, NY; Scout House Alumni, Preston, ONT; Boston Crusaders Senior, Boston, MA; Hawthorne Caballeros Alumni, Hawthorne, NJ; Yankee Rebels Alumni, Baltimore, MD; Steel City Ambassadors Alumni, Pittsburgh, PA; New York Skyliners Alumni, New York City, NY; Blessed Sacrament Golden Knights Alumni, Newark, NJ; Royal Airs Alumni, Chicago, IL; and Mighty St. Joe’s Alumni, LeRoy, NY. It appears all will accept and perform to the delight of drum corps fans.

President Gil Silva thanked the entire alumni movement for their support. It was very difficult cutting the list to a manageable 10 corps, with so many corps wanting to participate. “With       interest like this, we expect this year’s show to be the best ever,” Silva advised. DCA has initiated closer communications with the dozens of alumni corps around the country. It is hoped that this will allow for a good mix of corps each year.

“This group has something for everyone from the 1950s to the 1980s,” Silva said. He was especially pleased to welcome Steel City to their first “Alumni Spectacular.” They were a major DCA corps for many years. In 1986, they tied for first in prelims with the Cabs and became a part of DCA history as they split the judges’ opinions between them and Cabs and allowed the Bushwackers to sneak in and win their first-ever championship. Steel City Ambassadors finished second. DCA remains resolved to preserve its own history as well as that of all drum corps.

In other DCA news, the organization is very close to releasing the final schedule and line-ups for 2004. It is an expanded schedule, which features a much better mix of corps than in the recent past. The dates are included in the master summer schedule on this site.

In an exciting development, it appears DCA is very close to closing a deal with a corporate sponsor for the entire 2004 season and the 40th Annual DCA World Championships. This is a major step in the growth of DCA and proves that the administration is intent on continuing the spiral of growth started during the last five years.

Silva is determined to continue the dream Mickey Petrone had for the future of DCA. All of this will be finalized at the March 27 general membership meeting in Scranton.

On the championship front, it appears 2004 may be a record- setting year for attendance, both on the field and off. Yokohama’s Inspires seem determined to return this summer and numerous other corps have already notified DCA of their intent to perform in preliminary competition.

DCM’s Minnesota Brass and Kilties appear to have at least one or two of their fellow DCM members considering the trip. Southern California’s Dream has announced their intention to attend. Of course, San Francisco’s Renegades will be back to capture the audience again.

All the current members are healthy and   anxious for the season to begin. As of March 5, it appears 23 corps in preliminary competition may be a reality. This would tie the record attendance set in 1987 (the famous wash-out year).

Other changes this year include moving the preliminaries to Saturday afternoon/evening starting at 4:00 PM and holding the I&E and mini-corps competition at 6:00 PM on Friday night. To accommodate this, the World Drum Corps Hall of Fame induction has been moved to a luncheon on Saturday.

Sunday’s “Alumni Spectacular” remains at 10:00 AM and finals will be at 6:00 PM. Ticket sales begin April 1 and advance sign-up is available on the web by going to http://www.dcacorps.org and selecting “events.”