Always Leave a Place Better than You Found It

March / April 2019 Publisher's Letter

I am a co-leader for my daughter’s 4th grade Girl Scouts troop. We meet one evening per month in a kindergarten classroom at her school and go on one outing per month. So far during this academic year, we’ve gone horseback riding, ice skating, and camping, to name a few activities.

In everything we do, we are guided by certain principles. “Always leave a place better than you found it” is one I often remind my scouts. Not only do we clean up after ourselves, but we also throw out random trash that may have already been in the area and straighten up chairs, tables, and other equipment in order to be useful to our hosts. We assign kapers, or chores, to clean bathrooms, sweep or vacuum, and wipe tables.

For drum corps and other marching groups that rely on high school and college facilities to practice and sleep, this same motto holds true. While on tour, drum corps may spend 90 days straight staying under someone else’s roof. And with greater difficulties securing housing, they know that they need to go out of their way to be good guests. Whether your ensemble spends one night or up to 90 nights away from home, you’ll get useful advice to “Build Housing Relationships That Last”.

In this issue, we also highlight unique ways that guards use fabric beyond standard flags. From flyovers to ribbons and chain flags, these alternative silks create different effects that can result in a positive impression on audiences and judges. However, they also have their own challenges. Find out how to use these different types of equipment more effectively in the article “Fabric on the Field and Floor” .

As we look forward to the 2019 WGI Sport of the Arts championships, we also feature drum corps organizations that have grown or launched their presence in indoor activities. Read “Inside Job” for a look at long-running groups like the Blue Knights Percussion Ensemble and Riverside City College Indoor Percussion, operated by BD Performing Arts, as well as newer players like Crossmen Winds, Blue Knights Winds, and Music City Winds.

Continue making the world a better place!

Musically Yours,
Christine Ngeo Katzman
Publisher and Editor-in-Chief

About the author

Christine Ngeo Katzman

Christine Ngeo Katzman has played the flute since the age of 8. She marched in the Northwestern University Marching Band, including the 1996 Rose Bowl and 1997 Citrus Bowl. She graduated cum laude from Northwestern with a bachelor’s degree in journalism in 1997. Since then, she has worked in the publishing industry as a writer and editor and helped launch Play Music, a magazine for recreational musicians, sponsored by American Music Group (now Music and Arts Center). In the summer of 2006, Christine worked at Yamaha where she interacted with staff and students in various marching bands and drum corps. Christine earned her MBA with honors from the University of Southern California in May 2007.