NFL is to football and NLB is to baseball just as DCI is to marching band! It can literally be described as "professional marching band" (minus woodwinds and trombones). According to DCI.org, more than 8,000 students audition for about 3,500 positions in top-tier drum corps every summer. These corps are made up of 3 parts: the hornline, the colorguard, and the percussion:
|Percussion (Front Ensemble)|
While on tour, your days are pretty much divided into four different types:
- Rehearsal Days: These days are literally no different from the schedule that took place during spring training. You wake up, rehearse for about 13 hours, and then go to sleep.
- Show Days: These days are abbreviated versions of rehearsal days. After rehearsal is over, the members are given a few hours to shower, pack up their things, get into uniform, and load the buses before the corps heads to the performance site. Once the show is done, everyone loads the buses again to travel towards the next show site.
- Laundry Days: Some corps get these types of days more than others, but still they're DEFINITELY needed. You'd be surprised by how quickly you'll burn through your clothes when you're rehearsing anywhere from 6 to 14 hours a day. Typically, this day takes place during a rehearsal day; rehearsal is shortened to allow time for this to happen.
- Free Days: As mentioned above, some corps get more of these days than others, but most corps usually have two of these per season. It's simply a day where the members allowed to roam free and enjoy the city for most of the day.
Drum corps is one of those activities that falls under the saying, "To those that know, no explanation is needed; to those that don't, no explanation is possible." It's something you simply just have to experience, whether if it's as a performing member or a spectator. When you think about it in the end, these kids are spending about nine-and-a-half months to perform about 10 minutes worth of music. Yet, here's an example of the caliber of the performance level you'll be experiencing in those 10 minutes: