Linda Shamaly of Lapeer, Mich. had never been to a drum corps show prior to the DCI Kalamazoo event in Michigan on July 5. She traveled 120 miles to get there with her son, Tyler, a high school senior who talked her into attending. Here's what she had to say about the experience: My two sons went to Madison, Wis. last year to see a Drum Corps International show and afterward, I promised them that if I had a chance, I'd go with them to see an event. I went on DCI.org and learned there was a big show right here in Michigan, and so here we are. I've watched drum corps on television before and expected to see more than what I saw on TV. It was that and much more. I'm so glad I came in person. I'm amazed how the members memorize everything. I think the dedication of the people involved with corps—the kids and the instructors—and the discipline you see on the field is something that really stood out. You see how the adults meet with the members before and after they go on the field and witness the intensity and discipline displayed by the kids before they perform and when they hit the field. It was just awesome. From the recordings I heard earlier, I thought the groups were much larger due to the amount of sound they produced, but there aren't that many people out there. It's amazing that so few people can produce such a great amount of sound. I'd love to see Tyler get a chance to march in a corps. I think it would give him an opportunity he would really enjoy. It would also give him some discipline that would benefit him for the rest of his life and give him focus and help him set goals.
Linda Shamaly with son Tyler.
Nicholas Dygert is a high school senior in central Michigan. He came with about 25 members of his band to the DCI Kalamazoo event. He said: This was my first show ever. I came with my state indoor championship marching band. I had heard about this show, but being from a small town, I don't get out a lot. I'm glad we made it here. I've seen Drum Corps International DVDs before, but they are nothing compared to witnessing drum corps performances firsthand. I was looking forward to a lot of precision, and as a snare drummer; I wanted to see the best drummers. The level of talent I saw is unparalleled. Seeing what happens when one puts in that amount of hard work is beyond belief. The way they march, the precision they display and the show they put on for the crowd kept me on the edge of my seat. There was never a dull moment. The other members of my band were all blown away. I would love to join a corps in the future.
Nicholas Dygert (R) with fellow band
member Paul Coltonmenter.
member Paul Coltonmenter.