Phantom Regiment isn’t quite ready to reveal the theme of the corps’ 2018 production, but corps members are already brimming with excitement about what they’ll be performing when the Drum Corps International Tour kicks off in June.
“This year’s show is very different than things we’ve done in the past,” said third-year euphonium player Alexis Macy. “I think it’s going to be the most powerful show we’ve had in a very long time.”
Phantom Regiment’s horn line came together this past weekend for a rehearsal camp just north of the corps’ hometown at Aldrich Middle School in Beloit, Wisconsin.
With a focus on fundamentals, corps members had a packed schedule that included work on choreography, marching basics and music. Regiment has a first draft of all of the music that will make up its 2018 production, and much of the focus on this weekend’s rehearsal centered on the second half of that program.
Phantom Regiment’s brass section is under new leadership this season. Caption head Brad Toth, who spent the last six years at the Blue Knights, brought in a new staff that has been interacting with Regiment corps members since November. Working with one of drum corps’ most storied horn lines, they’ve striven to make a seamless transition.
“The way they teach, Brad’s team is on the same page all the time,” said Amanda Petro, a fourth-year trumpet player who also serves as Phantom Regiment’s horn sergeant. “The fact that we’re all on the same thread no matter who’s coming in front of us is awesome.”
Petro says that the makeup of this year’s horn line is providing a strong foundation from which corps members can develop during off-season rehearsal camps.
“Everyone seems to get along, and there’s great communication between corps members away from camps,” Petro said. “We’re talking to each other about what we’re doing here in rehearsal, but also getting to know each other as friends.”
“I think we all gel very, very well,” Macy added. “We’re all one unit at this point. There are no rookies and there are no vets.”
After March’s brass-only rehearsal camp, the full corps including percussion and color guard will come together at the end of April. It will be the corps’ last off-season practice before their spring training rehearsals get underway in May.
“I’m really looking forward to getting this full show on the field, putting it out for the audience, and seeing their reactions to what we do with the show this year,” Macy said. “It’s very different, but it’s also Phantom Regiment at the same time.”
Phantom Regiment will kick off its 2018 summer tour on Thursday, June 21, at the DCI Tour Premiere presented by DeMoulin Bros. & Co. in Detroit.