Drum Corps International
The DCI.org interview: Stuart Shulman, SCV drum major

The DCI.org interview: Stuart Shulman, SCV drum major

by Drum Corps International

Name, hometown, corps: My name is Stuart Shulman. I don't have a middle name; I guess I'm weird/special like that. I was born in Las Vegas but only spent about six months there. I call Phoenix my home. What is your role in the corps this summer? I will be the drum major.

Brad McCann (left) and Stuart Shulman, old high school buddies.
Where do you go to school, and what extracurricular activities are you involved with there? I attend the University of Arizona in Tucson. I play tuba in the wind ensemble, work with an outreach band, teach at a middle school and high school and am a member of Phi Beta Kappa Honorary. 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 marched for four years in high school and was the drum major my last year there. I was the section leader of the sousaphones for two years before that. I started marching with SCV my junior summer. It was the first corps that I ever tried out for and I really didn't know what I was getting myself into. I was originally cut in November but I kept coming back and earned a spot in March. I marched one year on contra in '01 and have been the drum major ever since. I age out in '05. The last good book I read: Well they aren't your "normal" books that everyone else would read. Mostly music education books and journals. The last great film I saw: "The Girl Next Door." My friend dragged me to it but It was actually a really funny movie. Three CDs I'd want on a deserted island: Incubus, "Make Yourself" (is it me or has almost everyone put this one?!), Metallica, "S & M" and a Tchaikovsky symphonies 4-6 CSO recording from 1974. My favorite TV show: The original "CSI" and "Stargate: SG1." Favorite performers: I've seen Metallica a few times, and that was great. I honestly don't get out to many "real" concerts, so I will have to work on that. How do you "blow off steam?" Play racquetball, practice my tuba, listen to some Incubus or Jamiroquai, or just hang with friends. Why I march with the corps I am in: There is an old saying that you don't choose SCV, it chooses you. Well, that was very true for me. A buddy of mine, Rob Doherty, got me to come and try out and the rest has been history. SCV is like my family and the people in it have helped me through so much in my life. I feel like I really found my home and I have had no desire to go anywhere else. Was it always your goal to be in a leadership role? At SCV, not really. I knew that if I stuck around long enough and worked extremely hard that I could be the contra section leader, but it was definitely not my goal to be the drum major after my first year. That was a huge surprise to me and a real honor and I have not once taken that honor lightly. How will you go about balancing the roles of leader and corpsmate? I look at myself as just another member of the corps. Everyone has specific responsibilities and without everyone doing them, the corps cannot function. I make it really clear to the members that I am not "above" them in any way. I just try to gain the respect of the corps and that way they trust me and understand when things need to get done. I learned very quickly my first year that if I just do my job correctly and to the best of my ability, the corps will follow me and we can all work together. What has been your formative drum corps moment? That sure is a loaded question. I think that one of my favorite moments was at my home show in 2002 when I was able to give my aussie to my mother as I conducted the victory concert. That was a special moment for me. Best drum corps show ever: SCV '87. Gets me every time! What are you most looking forward to about the summer? Being with all of my new and old friends and being able to perform nearly every night while leaving it all on the field. Best thing about being a drum corps leader: I automatically have to know everyone. Worst thing about being a drum corps leader: Less sleep then everyone else and never being able to truly "relax." During tour, the best part of the day is: Performances and down time after a show/last block. During tour, the worst part of the day is: "Good Morning Santa Clara!!" That would be me waking up the corps in the morning. It's that hardest part of the day. Favorite drum corps personality and why: Brandt Crocker. He is just hilarious and a great all-around person. What do you want to be when your drum corps career is over? I would like to be a high school band director and start teaching in the drum corps world.

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