Changing Times in the Marching World

Times are changing in the marching world. Music for All (MFA), celebrating its 35th anniversary this season, recently announced a leadership change with long-time CEO and president Scott McCormick resigning his position.

And at Drum Corps International (DCI), talks have been underway between the DCI organization and a coalition of the top seven drum corps, known as G7, to alter the summer tour schedule and perhaps the future direction of the activity. Members of the G7 and DCI would not comment about the current negotiations although they seem confident that a compromise will be reached.

While change is inevitable, especially in a down economy, one thing remains the same: It’s all about the students. Everyone involved in the marching activity wants to do what they feel is best for its members. We all know that students involved in the marching arts learn more than just music; they learn teamwork, leadership, discipline, respect, sacrifice and other life lessons.

After receiving many student-submitted essays through the years—including this summer’s “Drum Corps Diary” series written by members of the Pacific Crest —we have realized, now more than ever, that the lessons that young adults receive in the marching arts stay with them for the rest of their lives.

Therefore, we are starting an exciting new project: a book with a compilation of personal essays about “life in band” and the lessons learned along the way. Consider it “Chicken Soup for the Soul” meets “Drumline.”

We are seeking submissions from students, directors, parents and alumni Remember that the best stories show a specific experience that helped you grow or change your outlook. Email your stories to with the subject line, “Life in Band Book.” Submissions have no word limit and are due by November 15.

We believe that every band and every person has a story, and Halftime Magazine is here to help you share yours.

Keep on Marching,
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.