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Revere senior auditions for Drum Corps Team, The Cadets, gets accepted into program

Sarp Sezer, Graphic Coordinator

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The auditionees sit patiently, waiting to compete against people who, just like them, are vying to join the historic drum corps: the Cadets. The drum corps consists mainly of instrumental musicians, but this season The Cadets are auditioning some vocalists to add to the drum corps regiment. Noah Sigsworth, a senior at Revere High School, enters the audition room, ready to impress those critiquing him. He has traveled all the way to New Jersey for this audition, prepared to complement the world’s loudest unamplified music with a striking voice. He dreams of standing in front of thousands, ready to make history.

Sigsworth recently auditioned and has been contracted for the revolutionary vocal ensemble The Cadets, one of the founding members of Drum Corps International (DCI), are incorporating. DCI consists of almost fifty corps from twenty states, each rehearsing for long hours on little sleep for three months. They perform yearly programs meant to convey some type of story or concept through music and movements on a football field. His mother, Cheryl, has noticed her son’s interest in drum corps in the past. She stated how long he has been interested in Drum Corps International (DCI).

“Noah has been interested in Drum Corps since his freshman year when he and his bandmates volunteered for a show at InfoCision Stadium. Since then he has organized several groups of his friends over the years to go with him to watch the DCI shows when they are performing in our general vicinity. If you are a good friend of Noah, you have probably been invited to attend a show with him,” she said.

Sigsworth put much effort into his audition, as the competition for a slot in the new vocal ensemble of the Cadets is intense. He described what drum corps means to him, the hardships that come with it, and why he has been so interested in it for so long.

“On average, a world class drum corps rehearses fifty hours for every minute of performance, regularly having fourteen hour rehearsal during the three-month long season. Also, drum corps is by far the loudest form of unamplified music, often reaching over 120 decibels. In plain terms, it feels somewhere between getting hit by a train horn and actually getting hit by a train. Everyone in a world class drum corps is the best of the best, and the musicianship is unbelievable. What they do is a remarkable combination of a football halftime show, a broadway musical, and a professional sport,” Sigsworth said.

Sigsworth explained who The Cadets are and their legacy in the history of Drum Corps.

“The Cadets are a very unique corps. Founded in 1934, they are one of the oldest drum corps in North America with a long tradition of innovation. The Cadets were the first corps to use contrabass bugles (tubas) in competition and have a themed show (entitled No More War, during the height of our conflict in Vietnam). They were also the first corps to win using non-militaristic, asymmetrical drill design. Their proud tradition of innovation continues this year with the world’s first solely vocal ensemble in a drum and bugle corps, and I am extremely proud to be a part of it.” Sigsworth said.

Sigsworth, extremely interested in DCI for a while now, decided to take the opportunity to try out for one of his favorite corps. He originally planned on auditioning for a corps next summer, however the members of this new vocal ensemble only have to pay 2,500 dollars for the summer to participate in the Cadets as opposed to the 4,500 dollars required of the instrumentalists. The move-in date for the vocal ensemble of the corps is June 6 as compared to the mid-May move-in date of the instrumentalists, so Sigsworth will still get to attend his high school graduation. He described how he felt when he auditioned for the ensemble.

“It was a very nerve-wracking experience. [I was] four states away, auditioning for a vocal ensemble in a room full of vocal performance majors. I admit, I had accepted I probably would not make it. However, my audition went pretty well, and when I found out I got in I immediately contacted my family and called my girlfriend. I was so excited. It is literally a dream come true,” Sigsworth said.

Cheryl Sigsworth described her expectations and reaction when she found out the Cadets accepted her son into their vocal ensemble. She knows that while her son has only been singing for a relatively short time, the family thought that the audition would at the least provide a fun weekend and good practice.

“This is the first time a corps has had an audition for a vocal ensemble, and Noah was excited to go to New Jersey to audition and get a look at the behind the scenes world of DCI . . . . [It was] an awesome surprise that he was offered a spot as one of the 4 male vocalists, we are also excited to see how the vocalists are incorporated into the show,” she said.

The ensemble’s director, Demetrius Walker, described how excited he was for the corps, and how he thinks it will have an effect on Drum Corps.

“I’m excited about how we are going to change how drum corps is, forever,” Walker said.

Walker also elaborated on how the auditions were set up.

“Everyone who is in the ensemble had to audition. Some students sent in pre-screening videos as well. There was a two-part audition. First part, auditionees had to prepare two songs, and the second part was how well they blended,” Walker said.

Sigsworth explained his increasing interest in band music and drum corps.

“[Music] is a way to express pure passion that everyone can understand. There’s a unique feeling when you get to observe 150 incredibly well trained musicians and athletes performing their hearts out at once. They work incredibly hard, and watching them perform on the world’s largest stage is something that simply must be experienced at least once in your life. There is an energy, an electricity, and a passion that cannot be put into words. These kids are all truly excellent, and I am just happy to be along for the ride,” Sigsworth said.

Sigsworth stated whether his future could involve drum corps.

“My future is a bit of a mystery. I am planning to major in a tuba performance degree and a business-related degree, but I have not decided which kind yet,” Sigsworth said.

Over the summer, Noah will perform on the field with The Cadets in more than 15 states, hoping to win the DCI world championship. He will endure the grueling rehearsals but recognizes their worth, as he will be involved in the success of one of his passions: Drum Corps.

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Revere senior auditions for Drum Corps Team, The Cadets, gets accepted into program