Drum Corps International
The DCI.org interview: Jim Zulick, Cadets' color guard captain

The DCI.org interview: Jim Zulick, Cadets' color guard captain

by Drum Corps International

Name, hometown, corps: Jim Zulick, Nazareth, Pa., the Cadets What is your role in the corps this summer? This summer I will be taking on the responsibilities of color guard captain, alongside Philip Traini.

Jim Zulick
Where do you go to school, and what extracurricular activities are you involved with there? I attend New York University, located in New York City. I am a sociology major and a pre-business minor, working towards obtaining a job in the advertising or marketing industry.^ Along with my academic responsibilities, I am also an RA in one of the largest residence halls in the country. Currently I am interning at an advertising agency as to gain experience within the field. On the weekends I teach color guard part-time at Bethel High School, located in Connecticut. Give us your full drum corps/marching music background, and how each position prepared you for the leadership role you're in this summer. My experience with marching music began in eighth grade, when I was one of eight middle school students to join the high school marching band. I played the alto saxophone and was named section leader in ninth grade, and woodwind section leader in tenth grade. My junior and senior year of high school I had the privilege of being the drum major of the marching band. Throughout my high school years I became more and more of a drum corps fan, but unfortunately was not in a section that had a place in drum corps. Off and on I attempted to learn how to play the mellophone and I joined the percussion ensemble in hopes of being able to one day join a drum corps in one of these sections. Neither of these options worked out too well, so I started playing with the idea of color guard. Through learning basics from my friends in my high school, and some other friends that I had involved with the activity, I finally found something that "clicked." I attended YEA!'s international auditions for the 2001 season with hopes of securing an alternate spot somewhere. Luckily through my perseverance and hard work I was able to earn a spot marching with the Cadets as a full time member. Up until this point I have not had a position that has combined my color guard experience and my leadership roles, but I foresee it being a natural combination. The last good book I read: "The Nanny Diaries" by Emma McLaughlin and Nicola Kraus. This one wasn't a real intellectual masterpiece, but it was fun to see how it related to the experiences my babysitting friends have shared with me. The last great film I saw: "The Hours." I had read the book, and seeing it on the big screen was amazing. Not to mention that the original score by Philip Glass is also fabulous! Three CDs I'd want on a deserted island: Bjork, "Greatest Hits", Aaliyah, "Aaliyah" and my favorite mixed CD that I made (I know it's cheating, but there are too many random other things that I would want). My Favorite TV show: "Will & Grace" My favorite performers: I'd have to be partial and say all those people that I have marched with -- I'm always amazed by how great we look together by the end of the summer. How do you blow off steam? Either just getting into a place where I can think clearly --listening to my headphones while sitting outside -- or going out with my friends and dancing until my feet want to fall off. Why I march with the corps I am in: What really drew me to the Cadets was their extreme sense of presence. From the first time that I saw the corps, I felt like they had an impressive aura about them when they took the field, or just as they walked around. That feeling, and the obvious display of discipline and perfection, was something that I wanted to embody. When I attended my first camp it was an amazing feeling to be part of such a group, and the acceptance of everyone really made me feel at home. Now that I've been with the corps for a few years, I really couldn't imagine being able to go to another group and feel as at home and proud as I do with the Cadets. Was it always your goal to be in a leadership role? After being in various leadership roles in high school, I first entered the corps thinking it would be great to be a drum major some day (realizing the obvious roadblock of being in the color guard). Once I was inside the corps it became clear that such a role was not something that I would want to be in. Even so, as I became more comfortable with fulfilling my roles as a marching member in the corps, I did look forward to the possibility of having the chance to be in a leadership position. How will you go about balancing the roles of leader and corpsmate? I feel an important part of balancing the two roles is making sure to remain friends with everyone. Even though there is a level of leadership there, we are still all working towards the same goal and it would be detrimental to try and establish an extreme separation or hierarchy. What has been your formative drum corps moment? One of the greatest moments that I'll never forget was during finals in 2001. It was the final set of the show and as I was charging to the front of the field, spinning away, I became overjoyed with the realization that I had made it through the entire summer and accomplished my goal of marching with the Cadets for the summer. Best drum corps show ever: Cadets 1998 -- Every time I watch this show, I just sense perfection. What are you most looking forward to about the summer? I'm really looking forward to making great new friends, and spending the summer with the amazing friends I already have in the corps. Best thing about being a drum corps leader: Being able to represent an awesome group, and enact change have to be the best parts about being a leader. Worst thing about being a drum corps leader: Knowing that if something unfortunately goes wrong, either your actions could have prevented it, or you will be held accountable for fixing it. During tour, the best part of the day is: Walking off the field with that amazing feeling of having just performed an awesome show. During tour, the worst part of the day is: That time between rehearsal and taking a shower at night, when you just feel covered in grime and extremely tired. Favorite drum corps personality: I used to always associate Bill Speakman with drum corps because of his work with the PBS broadcast. Through his association with the Cadets, I have had the chance to interact with him often, and find him to be an amazing person and a great role model. What do you want to be when your drum corps career is over? After I age out I'd like to find a job working in advertising or marketing, and hopefully stay in a metropolitan setting. Obviously I wouldn't be able to totally walk away from this activity, so I'd also like to stay connected either through teaching, or just being an avid fan.