Drum Corps International
Midwest memories

Midwest memories

by Drum Corps International

This memory comes form Corey Jones, who marched as a euphonium player with Phantom Regiment the 1992 and 1994 seasons after marching as a member of Sky Ryders in 1991. I don't recall the date or city, but there was a show in 1994 where our buses were parked about a mile from the stadium. Afterward, we formed a block and began marching back through the neighborhood streets. It was late by this time, sometime around midnight. As luck would have it, it began to rain on us hard. No one said a word. We just kept marching down unlit streets, through what turned into a furious downpour. The further we went, the more hyped we became. The only sounds were the rain and our continued steps, a silent parade that no one—most likely—ever saw. However, I like to imagine someone peering out their front window and seeing, perhaps during a flash of lightning, what must have looked like ghostly apparitions, dressed in white. "Was that ..." Another glance ... Gone. Phantom Regiment had passed, silently, into the night. The following is from Mark Bertram, a member of Phantom Regiment 1986-1990. In 1989, Phantom Regiment and the Madison Scouts had their own little competition going. That was the summer the first "Batman" movie came out in theaters. As a result, the two corps decided to see who could sneak the most Batman-related souvenirs onto the field during retreat each night. It started innocent enough; stickers in our helmets, action figures in their sashes. Eventually, though, it escalated to the point of one of our members sneaking a foot-long "Batmobile" toy onto the field in his contra bell! Matt Briddell, a former member of Pioneer and Capital Regiment, submitted the following. In 2001, when I was a member of the Pioneer, we were performing in Cedarburg, Wis., which was one of our hometown shows. We were on the edge of a thunderstorm as we started, and it moved in as the show progressed. When we got to our "America the Beautiful" hit in the closer, the clouds let go and opened up, and the small crowd went nuts for us. We had pretty good timing on that one. My most memorable experience, however, has to be the time Capital Regiment performed in stormy conditions at the Normal, Ill. show. It was incredibly windy as we took the field, and shortly after the show started, the ushers began instructing people in the audience to move inside. As people began to move out, many were on their feet, screaming their heads off the whole show. Moving into our closing piece, we were facing backfield and I could see that the sky was an ugly mix of green, purple and black, and the wind at that point made marching nearly impossible. By the end of the show, flags, cymbal bags and other equipment were blowing around. We finished the show and safely hurried off the field and marched indoors where we got a tremendous standing ovation from everybody who had taken shelter from the conditions.

Editorial assistance by Michael Boo. Fanfare archives

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