When your son or daughter decides to be part of a Drum Corps International corps, he or she is making a choice that requires a deep personal commitment that will require strength and focus. Facing new levels of responsibility, discipline and self-knowledge, they will gain values that will help them succeed in life.
HELP THEM PURSUE THEIR DREAMS
Every student has personal reasons for wanting to be part of a Drum Corps International (DCI) group. Your son or daughter is no different. It may simply be to become a better performer. Alternatively, it could be a way to be with friends. College-level students often view membership in a drum corps as a key rung in their climb to be professional performers or arts educators. For many students, it is a way to challenge themselves to become the best they can be.
Winning a drum corps International championship title, performing in front of tens of thousands of people, being a better horn player, being part of a tradition and part of something bigger than oneself, becoming the best music teacher, having the most extraordinary summer experience of their lives, meeting new people, learning from the best teachers or seeing new places.
No matter their dream, being part of a DCI drum corps such as the Blue Knights can help them achieve it, while at the same time providing one of the most intense and rewarding performing arts education experiences available in the world. It is an experience that helps build the performance, education and personal foundation of a lifetime.
Our season begins in mid-May with about two-weeks of rehearsals (also known as “All Days”). Rehearsals are typically 12 hours a day, every day. Members will get several blocks of free time and several opportunities to do laundry. This is the most tedious and challenging portion of the season but the hard work put in will pay dividends later in the season. The Blue Knights then hit the road for their national tour performing at competitions while continuing to refine their competitive show. The Blue Knights typically perform at approximately 30 shows throughout the country that end up at the DCI World Championships in Indianapolis, Indiana on the second Saturday in August of each year.
The Blue Knights typically drive approximately 10,000 miles every summer in four coach buses (three for the members and one for the instructional staff) and two vans (for admin staff and volunteers). Our convoy also includes two semi–trailer trucks (one that carries our uniforms and musical equipment with the other acting as our mobile kitchen used to prepare 4 meals a day for our 150 members plus staff and volunteers). The Blue Knights mobile kitchen features a walk-in refrigerator and freezer, storage shelving for canned goods, sink, and oven.
“All Days” is usually spent in Denver and surrounding area high schools. While touring, we sleep mostly on gym floors in various high schools and middle schools.
HEALTH AND MEDICAL
We travel with a medical staff at all times and have an extensive network of healthcare professionals available to help keep your son or daughter healthy. Both water and Gatorade are available at all rehearsals. Members are given many water breaks and tour management ensures that the drum corps has adequate rest. All participating members are required to submit proof of medical history form and health insurance information to the our medical staff.
If your son or daughter has special dietary needs, let management know and we’ll do our best to accommodate them.
CONTACTING YOUR BLUE KNIGHT
• By Mail: We have mail drops periodically throughout the summer. Information will be posted on this website and our Facebook page as it is confirmed. ONLY send to addresses we specify as mail drop sites for a specified date range. NEVER send to any other address. Schools will not accept packages for us.
• By Phone: You may contact your Blue Knight via cell phone at any time (although they may be very busy rehearsing). Cell phones (along with any other personal electronic device) will be the sole responsibility of the member.
• By Social Media: Want to know what’s happening without annoying your kid with constant stream of text messages? Then follow us on our Blue Knights Drum & Bugle Corps Facebook page. That’s where all updates will get posted first. You can also join our Blue Knights Family Facebook group to ask questions and learn how to stay involved.
NOTE: Emergency contact information is provided to parents or guardians with a number of ways to reach their son or daughter, when needed.
Is this your first exposure to drum corps or the Blue Knights? Is your child traveling from home for the first time and you would feel better accompanying them? Just plain curious
Then join join us as a volunteer and work along side people that will can answer way more questions and share far more experiences than you’ll find online. Time will be available to see what your kid is doing on tour.
Did you know? The Blue Knights are not be able to operate without the power of its volunteers! If you’d like to give us a hand (whether it is a day, a weekend, or a week) and be a part of what goes on behind the scenes, please visit our volunteer page.
All rehearsals are open to the public and you are always welcome to come visit your son or daughter on a break or after a show. NOTE: Only drum corps staff and members are allowed inside our housing facilities and on the buses. Let us know who you are looking for and we will find them for you.
Tuition covers the full cost of participation in the drum corps, including spring training housing and meals, tour meals and transportation, instruction, equipment, uniforms, shoes, logistics, and administrative support. Does not include Brass Fee. Limited additional expenses may be incurred. Learn more about the fees here in our FAQ.
DID YOU KNOW? Tuition paid by members accounts for less than 45% of the actual expense of the drum corps experience! All members are expected to participate in one fundraising project for the drum corps. For complete information please see the membership manual.
SCHOLARSHIPS & SPONSORSHIPS
Scholarships are available for members looking for financial assistance with paying their member fees, and it is highly encouraged that you apply for scholarships if you are interested. The deadline for scholarship applications is typically in February. Scholarships may also be available for certain volunteer activities, as agreed upon with the Executive Director. Another way to raise funds towards your member fees is through sponsor assistance by utilizing your personal network. A packet to help guide you in finding sponsorships in this way will be provided to interested members. For more information on the sponsorship packet or applying for scholarships, contact the Ascend Performing Arts Office at 303-777-1937 or at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Still have questions? You may also contact Laura Achilles at email@example.com to get involved.