Name, hometown, corps: Nikki Turner; Rockford, Ill.; Phantom Regiment What is your role in the corps this summer? I am one of the co-captains of the color guard along with Rachel Niemi.
Where do you go to school, and what extracurricular activities are you involved with there? For the last couple of years I've attended the University of Nevada, Las Vegas in which I was involved in color guard, cheerleading, and was an active member in the Delta Zeta sorority. This semester I'm working on getting into school in California. Give us your full drum corps/marching music background, and how each position prepared you for the leadership role you're in this summer. I've been involved in drum corps my entire life. I started when I was 9 in the Phantom Regiment Cadets. I marched there from '93-'97 and in '97 I was co-color guard captain with my sister. I made the cut for Phantom Regiment in '98 when I was 15 and have been marching there since. I became a captain of the color guard in 2002. What prepared me for this role was watching and learning how other captains/and or leaders do it. Not just from my corps -- you can learn a lot just watching what goes on before and in retreat. The last good book I read: "The Da Vinci Code" The last great film I saw: I just saw "Kill Bill Vol.1" (I know, I'm lame) Three CDs I'd want on a deserted island: Dave Matthews' "Live at Luther College;" Pink Floyd's "The Wall;" and some kind of techno dance CD, just for variety. My favorite TV show: "Absolutely Fabulous" Favorite performers: Circus performers How do you "blow off steam?" Working out, but since I do that all day in the summer, usually eating a few Starbursts helps me out -- I take all my tension and put it into chewing those things. Why I march with the corps I am in: I originally went into the Phantom organization because it's where my mom marched along with most of my family. Also I was in Rockford, and so was the Regiment. But I've stayed with the organization because it has taught me almost everything I've needed to know about life, I've literally grown up in this corps. Also the friends I've made here will be with me to my end. Was it always your goal to be in a leadership role? It has always been my goal to be captain, not just because my mom was, but because I like being in a leadership role. How will you go about balancing the roles of leader and corpsmate? The same as I always do. We are professionals on the field, but it's all fun and games when we come off. I was in a non-leadership role a lot longer then in one, so sometimes I have to remind myself that things are what they are and that problems will all balance out in the end. What has been your formative drum corps moment? Going from a Division III corps to a Division I corp. I had marched with the same people for five years. It was hard walking into an element I had only dreamed of, with much older members. I did a lot of learning and growing up that summer. Best drum corps show ever: Santa Clara Vangard 1994. The Red Poppies on the field, and the costumes, it was an absolutely beautiful show. My favorite part was when the Russian girls ran across the field and the Chinese emerged, I'm pretty sure that's what happened, I haven't seen it, though, since DCI finals in '94. Makes me smile just thinking about it. What are you most looking forward to about the summer? Making every day count; and it's also my age out!
Best thing about being a drum corps leader: That you can set an example, that people look to you for answers. I like the fact that things can go wrong at any moment and I finally feel prepared to handle it. It also feels great to know that people have the confidence in me to know that I can do a good job. Worst thing about being a drum corps leader: Most of the time you're the bearer of bad news, and if you make a wrong decision it could be one that affects a lot of people. During tour, the best part of the day is: Getting a good shower and finding out there's chicken patties for dinner. During tour, the worst part of the day is: Standing in the hot sun running the same big chunk over and over again. Favorite drum corps personality and why: His name is Tony, but I don't know his last name (editor's note: it's DiCarlo). He's one of the guys that stands on the field before retreat and tells you where you're going to go. He's always got a smile on his face and I absolutely love his East Coast accent. What do you want to be when your drum corps career is over? I've been thinking about this a lot this winter, because it's the first time I've never had plans for the next summer. I hope to teach a little but I'd really like to get involved in judging for DCI and WGI. Oh and I'd also like to rule the world, but we'll see how that one turns out.