Lauren and Jose Medal at the Bugler’s Hall of Fame in Springfield-April 12, 2014 and put Arbella BACK on the drum corps map.

Lauren and Jose Medal at the Bugler’s Hall of Fame in Springfield-April 12, 2014 and put Arbella BACK on the drum corps map.

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To be fair, there seemed to be a lot of last minute cancellations, but we will take those medals anyway!

On Saturday Jose, Jenna, board member Medley Long, Lauren and Zoe squeezed into the Volvo to take part in the Bugler’s Hall of Fame in Springfield Mass.

This event was not just fun (it’s always awesome to connect with drum corps nuts!) but it was a great learning experience for us.  Although always a drum corps nut myself, I hadn’t heard much about the Bugler’s Hall of Fame regional competitions until the last few years, and I had never gone to one.  I went with Howie to the Boston regional in March which is sponsored by the St. Kevin’s Emerald Knights and got my first exposure to it.  It is a wonderful afternoon of drum corps, attracting everyone from the ol’ local drum corps legends, to the parents of the older alumni member – all the way down to middle school aged kids.  There is food served all afternoon, as it tends to be a long event, and for the older peeps, a bar.

For those who have never heard of the Bugler’s Hall of Fame, it is an Individual and Ensemble (“I&E”) competition as well as exhibition.  It starts with individuals on every instrument, then builds up to ensembles and mini corps.

The Springfield BHOF Regional was sponsored by the Melha Shriners Drum Corps.  Jose and I had prepared The Vivaldi Concerto for two Trumpets, which we practiced at the studio – with mutes so as not to piss of the building’s landlord.  It was kind of wierd performing it for the first time with NO mutes – LIVE at the event!  This is not recommended practice, by the way, but in the absence of not practicing it worked out ok.  We had nailed it a few times in practice, so really, the only issue was going to be nerves, which of course was exactly what happened.  On the positive side, we got encouraging marks from the judges and alot of feedback on how great our tone was.

We also prepared two individual pieces.  Jose prepared Flemenco and I the Trumpeter’s Lullaby.  Given how full the program was I bailed out of doing the solo so that Jose could have a slot.  If I had known so many had cancelled I might have done it, but I didn’t realize at the time.  Oh well.  Also in the trumpet category was the famous Richie Price who is legendary on the local drum corps circuit, a phenom jazz musician as well, he usually opens up all of our local shows with an amazing rendition of the Star Spangled Banner.  No pressure Jose!  Somebody said to him just before he went out to play “well at least you can say you competed against the very best”.  If only I had my camera on me at the time to capture Jose’s reaction!

There was an intermission and we all went outside on this first gorgeous day of the year and watched the Brassmen warm up.  We also met some Marksmen and talked about local drum corps for a while.  Too long as it turned out, as we missed the medal ceremony, which was advertised as being at the end of the show.  Oh well, it took the whole second half before we realized our duet had been actually been judged and we medalled with a score of 88.

Throughout the event we got alot of support and comments from other drum corps alums in attendance.  Dan Benoit, a Melha Shriner and Defender, gave us a nice introduction when it was our turn to compete.  It was a great afternoon and a learning experience for our members and board Member Medley who had never seen anything like it before.

Next year I fully anticipate we will perform as a full corps at the Boston Regional and perhaps Springfield as well.  I encourage all members to prepare an individual piece, or perhaps a duet, etc, to show off your skills next year.[/fusion_text][/fusion_builder_column][/fusion_builder_row][/fusion_builder_container]

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