Drum Corps International
The DCI.org intrview: Erin Holtz, Troopers first mellophone

The DCI.org intrview: Erin Holtz, Troopers first mellophone

by Drum Corps International

Name, age, hometown: Erin Holtz, 16, Caldwell, Idaho What corps are you in and what is your role this summer? This is my second year with the Troopers and I'm playing first mellophone this year. Give us your full drum corps/marching music background. So far I've marched mellophone for two years at Vallivue High School (one as section leader), and this is my second year as a mellophone for Troopers.

Erin Holtz
How did you decide to be a member of your corps? After watching the 2003 show in Boise, Idaho, I met Mike Gough outside the stadium. He introduced himself and then asked what I played. I said mellophone and he offered me a spot right then and there. Unfortunately, I'd never marched before that time and wouldn't have been ready to march. In February of 2004, he called and said that there was opening in the mellophone section for 2004. Mike convinced me to come to a camp. Without his phone call, I would have put off joining a corps for a few more years. What first attracted you to the drum corps activity? I always wanted to be in band, and at my first drum corps show that I remember, I decided that I wanted to play mellophone because they weren't too big or too small, and there weren't that many of them in a corps. Troopers is close to home, and my mother grew up listening to Troopers, so it only seemed fitting that I should march with her favorite corps. What advice would you give to young people who want to march? Do it! Marching is
one of the best experiences open to young people. You get to: 1) Learn what it's like to be on your own, but without actually being on your own
2) You end up with an amazing family that can never be replaced.
3) You get to travel around the country playing your instrument (or spinning) for thousands of screaming fans. Do you have any favorite road anecdotes? On our way through Ohio, the buses drove past the interstate exit to my grandmother's house. My mom had told me to call when we were about an hour from the housing site. Thinking my mom just wanted to meet us there, I called. Being so excited about knowing where I was for a change, I was looking for recognizable landmarks. As we drove by the exit to grandma's, I saw a crazy lady and two kids standing on a hill near the exit and waving a Troopers banner. I gasped as I realized who it was: My mother -- and my brother and sister. The last good book I read: "The Scarlet Pimpernel" by Baroness Emmuska Orczy The last great film I saw: "Phantom of the Opera" Where I go to school and what I'm studying: I'm a sophomore attending Vallivue High School. When I get to college I want to study music education and public relations. Jobs I have/have had: I work concessions for concerts and other events at the Idaho Center to pay off my band expenses. So far the only other thing I've done for a job was helping my dad and uncle with farming. The potatoes in Idaho don't pick themselves. Three CDs I'd want on a deserted island: 1. Blood, Sweat & Tears, "Greatest Hits"
2. Jim Jones Tribute CD
3. "The Essence of Maynard Ferguson" My favorite TV show: "M*A*S*H" and "Desperate Housewives" Favorite performers: The Ones who make performing look effortless How do you "blow off steam?" I practice my music, take a nap, put effort into my homework, or if push comes to shove -- I do housework. What has been your formative drum corps moment? For the 4th of July, one of our parades was in Michigan City, Ind. In front of us at the stepoff line was a senior corps. They decided to play "Battle Hymn" for us. Hearing those experienced performers play like that was amazing. The fact that they are still going strong is amazing. Best drum corps show ever: Madison '75 without a doubt. That soprano solo is HOT! What are you most looking forward to about the summer? Getting back my tan, tour in general, and blowing people's faces off. Best thing about being in a drum corps: The tan, the weight loss, and intense competition. Worst thing about being in a drum corps: PT. Nothing can be worse than having your visual caption head miscount and add on 15 or so more calf raises, leg throw downs, push ups, etc. During tour, the best part of the day is: When you're at your opening set and the announcer asks the drum major if the corps is ready and all you can hear is the roar of the crowd as he salutes. The adrenaline starts rushing and you're ready to throw down. Favorite drum corps personality and why: Steve Rondinaro because he has the awesome job of announcing the DCI broadcasts on TV. What I want to be when I "grow up": I would love to become a brass caption head for a corps, or a high school band director. Describe what you think a typical DCI show will look in 2015. I doubt it will be too different, maybe more amps. I hope that there are more corps and more people involved. Feel free to add anything else you'd like. Drum corps is the best -- all woodwinds should switch to brass, so they can be cool and do drum corps.

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