Drum Corps International
The DCI.org interview: Michael Terry, the Cadets' baritone section leader

The DCI.org interview: Michael Terry, the Cadets' baritone section leader

by Drum Corps International

Name, hometown, corps: Michael Terry, Woodstock, Ga., the Cadets What is your role in the corps this summer? I am the baritone section leader. Where do you go to school, and what extracurricular activities are you involved with there? I'm a senior at Woodstock High School. I'm in the marching band, wind symphony, jazz band, brass ensemble, brass quintet and the chorus. Outside of school, I'm in the Atlanta Youth Wind Symphony, the Emory Wind Ensemble and the Emory Brass Ensemble.

Michael Terry
Give us your full drum corps/marching music background, and how each position prepared you for the leadership role you're in this summer. Before I was born, my father founded Southwind. Later, both of my parents worked with Memphis Blues, so in a sense, I was born into drum corps. I started touring with Southwind when I was 3 and would bring one of the bugles my parents had with me to imitate what the corps kids were doing.
Don Taylor, who was working with Southwind at the time, heard me playing and would give me some pointers when he had the time. My family and I got to tour with Southwind from 1989 through 1997. When Southwind took a year off in 1998, my parents decided to volunteer with the Cadets. After two years of listening to and watching the corps, I knew that I wanted to march with them one day. I first went to the international audition in November of 1999 with no expectation of actually making the line -- I just wanted to play with the awesome horn line I had watched for the past two years. It ended up that Gino Cipriani, Joe Fussell, and the rest of the brass staff that year saw some potential in me and invited me back to successive camps. Five years later, I am still having the time of my life with the corps! The last good book I read: "Tuesdays With Morrie," by Mitch Albom. I am reading this for the third time since George Hopkins (executive director of YEA!) recommended it to the corps a few years back! Thanks Hop! The last great film I saw: "The Lord of the Rings: The Return of the King" Three CDs I'd want on a deserted island: "The Prayer Cycle" by Jonathan Elias, DCI's 25th Anniversary Championship Series (I know, it's cheating because there are actually 5 disks in the set. Oh well!), and Jethro Tull's "The Very Best of" (After Hop introduced this music to us, I listened to it and now I really enjoy it!). My favorite TV show: "My Wife and Kids" Favorite performers: Original London cast from "Phantom of the Opera" How do you "blow off steam?" I let my emotions out through writing music. Why I march with the corps I am in: I march with the Cadets because I enjoy being apart of the 70 years of tradition that this corps has, and I want to help in continuing that tradition for the next 70 years. Was it always your goal to be in a leadership role? I don't think it was consciously my goal to be in a leadership position, but I do base everything I do on the premise that someone is always watching you. I guess I try to be an example without thinking about it. How will you go about balancing the roles of leader and corpsmate? To balance the two roles, I'm going to give the good with the bad, the funny with the ugly. As I've found out through other leadership roles, primarily with my high school, a leader can't always tell people what they need to do better, or what they need to change. Those helpful remarks also have to come with some positives: Things that are going well, something that someone did correctly. It is a tough balance, but hopefully in the end, everyone comes out OK. What has been your formative drum corps moment? In 2001 there was a kid, Justin, who came to visit us finals week. He had cancer and was able to come because of the "Make a Wish" Foundation. It really made me think about how privileged I am to be able to march with the Cadets. At any second, something could happen in my life, and I wouldn't be able to do drum corps anymore. It made me realize how special this activity is and how much we do impact other lives in a positive way. Best drum corps show ever: My favorite show to watch is Star of Indiana, 1989. I just love the music! My favorite show that I have marched has to be 2001. Again, great music, and a great Jeff Sacktig drill to go along with it! What are you most looking forward to about the summer? I am really looking forward to how well the corps is going to get along. Already at the camps it seems that the horn line is bonding way more than we have in past years. During tour, the best part of the day is: Being able to take a shower after rehearsing all day! During tour, the worst part of the day is: Having any sort of rehearsal after lunch. No matter what type of rehearsal it is, you are guaranteed that "food coma" will set in and you will be kicking yourself for eating that fourth extra hot dog. Favorite drum corps personality and why: Brandt Crocker. When I hear him announce us, it just gets my adrenaline going! What do you want to be when your drum corps career is over? When I finally do age out (in 2007!), I want to compose music and be a free-lance professional euphonium player.

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