An Annual Family Tradition

Publisher's Letter September/October 2019.

Each year, my family plans our last summer vacation around Drum Corps International (DCI) World Championships in Indianapolis. While I’m obviously attending for work, going to the event has become an annual tradition for us.

We each have different reasons for enjoying DCI championships.

According to my husband, Josh, who was a drum major at Ferndale (Michigan) High School in 1993: “You get to see the best that the marching arts has to offer in terms of performance, creativity, and execution. Everything about ‘Marching Music’s Major League’ is professional. The stadium, logistics, and presentation—including video content on the screens—amplify and elevate everything in the sport to a professional level.”

According to my 14-year-old son who recently started his own adventures in marching band: “It’s cool to see all the shows.”

Yes, he’s a teen of many words!

According to my 10-year-old daughter who is learning piano and violin: “It’s fun. I enjoy the shows. I like going to the [food] lounge.”

For the first time, she watched all of the finals performances. The allure of a Beatles show kept her at her seat.

As for me, I spend time catching up with friends in the industry and learning about new products and innovations. I like being constantly surprised by the ingenuity of the drum corps as they push the envelope on sound, theatrics, equipment work, movement, and props. I enjoy seeing the performers’ emotions and the culmination of their hard work, knowing that their lives have been positively impacted in many ways by their season-long experiences. And it’s satisfying knowing that I’m playing a small role in this amazing activity.

In this issue, you can relive the magic of the 2019 DCI championships in our annual recap feature. Not only will you learn more about the show themes for all of the World Class and Open Class medalists, but you’ll also get an inside look at design decisions, challenges that needed to be overcome, and how each group gets stronger year after year.

We also spotlight “The Uniqueness of DCI Uniforms,” showcasing the evolution of corps-specific styles to show-specific designs.

For 13 years, DCI has become an entertainment staple for our household as it has for generations of pageantry lovers. May it continue to unite us all for many years to come.

Keep on Marching,
Christine Ngeo Katzman
Publisher and Editor-in-Chief

2019. Photo of the Bluecoats by Ken Martinson/

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.

A photo of Jeff Queen.

Polyrhythm 5:2

In the third and final installment on polyrhythms, we will discuss the 5 over 2 polyrhythm. Polyrhythm is defined by “The New Harvard Dictionary of ...