March 31, 2021
A newly formed alliance of Midwest-based drum and bugle corps is currently planning to host a series of six performances in late July and early August, leading up to the Drum Corps International Summer Celebration event in Indianapolis from August 12–14 in Lucas Oil Stadium. The groups included are the Blue Stars (La Crosse, WI), The Cavaliers (Rosemont, IL), Colts (Dubuque, IA), Madison Scouts (Madison, WI), and Phantom Regiment (Rockford, IL).
Honoring the 50th Anniversary of the original "Combine," these five groups will each host an event near their hometown along with a sixth conclusionary event. The original "Combine" was operational in 1971 and helped lay the groundwork for the formation of Drum Corps International in 1972.
"We are excited to restart the drum corps activity in the Midwest," said Chris Komnick, Executive Director of the Madison Scouts. "Developing this series of events give us an opportunity to perform for our communities while providing our members additional performances leading into Indianapolis."
"Foremost, our attention will be on safety," said Brad Furlano, Executive Director of the Blue Stars. "Assuming health conditions allow, we feel we can run these events in a way that safely enables our participants to perform and our audience to enjoy the return of the drum corps activity."
Each corps will host an event in or near its hometown with shows being planned for La Crosse, Chicago-area, Dubuque, Madison, and Rockford. A sixth and final event will be held in a central Midwest location. The events will be held on the weekends of July 30–August 1 and August 6–8. The specific combination of dates and locations will be announced later this spring.
"The loss of the 2020 competitive season due to COVID-19 created financial challenges for all the drum corps," said Monte Mast, Executive Director of The Cavaliers. "The Midwest Combine series of events will enable us to raise money for our organizations while re-engaging our fans."
The Midwest Combine series of events will be run in coordination with Drum Corps International and will help to add to the excitement surrounding the return of the drum corps activity in 2021.
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