The 2002 season is off to a great start for the two-time defending World Champion Cavaliers of Rosemont, Ill. After three weeks of pre-tour, we were all pretty anxious to have a performance. Things have been progressing at a great pace and we felt very prepared to show the public what we had in store for this summer. We began our touring schedule with three performances in a row. The first show was an exhibition in Sun Prairie, Wis., on Thursday, June 13. After a steady rain all day, we weren't sure if we would even get a chance to perform. Luckily, the skies cleared and the show went on. However, the wet grass mixed with the first-show "jitters" resulted in some interesting moments -- thrills and spills as it were, especially during some of our quicker-paced drill. In the end, it was a solid performance and we were happy with our efforts.The next day we ended up in Racine, Wis. Unfortunately, the rain followed us. We spent most of the day dodging raindrops, (I think we stopped rehearsal two or three times to come inside) and we even had to perform our run-through at the end of the day in a downpour. That night was our first judged competition. After the show, we could all tell that we were off to a great start.On Saturday, June 15, the corps traveled to Toledo, Ohio, to perform in one of the first big shows of the summer, with many of the top Midwest corps in competition. The Glass Bowl was a great venue to perform in and gave us a chance to get a feel for our show in a bigger stadium. The corps couldn't ask for a better night to perform, with cool weather and a receptive crowd.The next few days will be spent cleaning and refining what we already know, as well as adding more details to make the show complete. We are heading down south, with performances in Kentucky, Alabama, and Florida. By next weekend, we should be a much better drum corps and we will be ready for some free time in Orlando, Fla. Until then, we'll keep our focus and continue having a great summer.By Brandon Barrometti (Cavaliers drum major) and Ryan Ling (Cavaliers assistant drum major) Barrometti and Ling are both 21, are both from Ohio (Cincinnati and Wilmington, respectively), are both aging out at the end of the season, and are both Cavalier veterans. On Wednesdays this summer they'll be contributing diary notes for our "From the Road" feature. Ling, a former baritone player, is in his fifth year with the Cavaliers. Barrometti, a former tuba player, is in his fourth year. "I think this has been the most fun pre-tour yet," Ling said of the 2002 Cavalier season. "A lot of us are looking forward to doing something different this year," Barrometti said, noting the new feel of the Cavalier show.
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