Cadet Drum and Bugle Corps Questions

Discussion in 'Air Force Academy - USAFA' started by stella, Dec 15, 2012.

  1. stella

    stella Member

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    Academy Cadet Drum and Bugle Corps Questions...

    1. Do you have to audition for the drumline?

    2. Is there a 'pit' section for percussion and is that by audition?

    3. Can you participate in intrammurals AND Drum and Bugle Corps? We have read that you are not required to do intrammurals if you do D and B...but what if you want to do both?

    4. Is it a year round or only fall commitment (again, especially for those that want to be involved in athletics...can they do D and B in the fall and then do sports the rest of the year?)

    5. How well received is the Drum and Bugle Corps by the other cadets and the powers that be? We have read that at another Academy it is considered sort of the wimps way of exiting other training and athletics and not very well received or thought of.

    Thanks! Oh, and would love opinions on this from other Academys.

    S
     
  2. marciemi

    marciemi USMA Alumnus

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    I'll try to answer these the best I can - feel free to message me and I'll give you my email if you have more questions. My son has been in D&B for the last 3 years and is a section leader now.

    As far as auditioning - pretty much everyone who auditions makes it in (barring things like being on probations). You will need to audition for a specific section. From what I understand a lot of the pit players are people who used to play other (non-D&B) band instruments so they're easier to pick up than say a Baritone for a prior flute player. However, I doubt they'd turn down a strong pit player who wanted to be there. Same for drumline - the odds are that if you're good at an instrument (including drums), that you'll be able to play it in D&B.

    3. During the fall you wouldn't be able to do intramurals because D&B practices every day. In the winter/spring it would probably depend on what else you were involved in with the D&B. Freshman year my son played intramural soccer. Last year he was in the Red, Plaid & Blue (a travel subset of the D&B) and had rehearsal for that most days.

    4. I've never heard of anyone doing D&B and an IC sport. I suppose it might be possible with a spring sport, but not a winter one since even at this point D&B is still rehearsing for the bowl game. Also, everyone does pep band at basketball/hockey games, etc. and they travel to at least several places during the Jan-March range (Aspen/Keystone/Vegas have been some in the past). I'll ask my son if he's ever heard of someone doing a spring sport but would think the sport coaches wouldn't approve. If you're talking just intramurals/club (some of these are more serious than others), it probably wouldn't be a problem. Pep band isn't a big time commitment and the Corps is split up so if you had a conflict, you could always get someone to cover for you.

    5. My son had heard some of those rumors before going too but he didn't find it to be the case that much. There will always be people who think you're getting out of too much, but football players face that bias too. As long as you stay involved in the squad, attend training sessions when you can, and carry your weight (ie. Have a squared away room, do well on knowledge tests), no one will care.

    The travel is incredible - and especially welcome freshman year. Definitely some great opportunities and a lot of fun. Freshman year my son appreciated the breaks from the academy but after the year wasn't certain he would do D&B as a sophomore. But then last year he really started enjoying it more and was really glad he had. Now he can't imagine having not done it all the way through and will definitely be back next year (he's hoping to have a leadership role again). Again, message me with any questions if you'd like. He'll be home Tuesday so I can have him answer any more specific questions.

    You also may want to check out the Air Force Drum & Bugle Facebook group for more information and pictures as well as the United States Air Force Academy Drum & Bugle Corps page on FB as well.
     
  3. stella

    stella Member

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    Thank you...

    Thanks for the information! I will certainly PM you if we come up with more questions. Sounds like band there is like it is at most places; fun, like a family and filled with opportunities to travel!
    Our problem is sports, as that is just as much of an interest.
    Thanks again!

    S
     

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