The band behind Beyoncé’s Coachella performance heads to the Dollywood theme park with a rollercoaster of a show.
Twenty-eight DRUMLine Live musicians became part of the #Beychella experience when they performed side by side with pop singer Beyoncé at the Coachella Valley Music and Arts Music Festival in April 2018.
“My experience performing with the Queen B at Coachella was absolutely amazing,” says DRUMLine Live percussionist Maurice Mosley. “Getting the opportunity to perform back-to-back weekends in front of 150,000 screaming fans each time was just wonderful and mind-blowing.”
Beyoncé headlined the music festival, which took place April 13 to 22, performing numerous songs including some of her most famous tunes like “Formation,” “Crazy in Love,” and “Flawless.” She also paid tribute to historically black colleges and universities (HBCUs). “Everybody Mad,” gaining traction on social media, showcased Beyoncé’s dance moves and pumped up the energetic crowd.
DRUMLine Live trombonist Wayne Westley says he was “honored” to be a part of that experience. “As far as representing the HBCU culture, it’s a beautiful thing because a lot of people don’t know about our culture, … so I think shedding a great light and supporting HBCU culture is a great thing that she’s doing,” he says.
Members of DRUMLine Live had very little time to rest on their laurels following its performance with Beyoncé. Currently about 25 DRUMLine Live musicians are gearing up to perform in Dollywood from June 16 through July 4. This appearance will be the group’s first time performing at the Pigeon Forge, Tennessee, theme park, says Don P. Roberts, president and chief executive officer of the DRUMLine Live Entertainment Group.
“For us, to be able to say we performed with one of the greatest entertainers in the world, Beyoncé, and being able to perform for one of the greatest entertainers in the world, Dolly Parton, in one year is going to be an incredible year, remarkable for our company, and we’re very excited,” Roberts says.
DRUMLine Live stages a theatrical performance showcasing HBCU marching band culture. Musicians will perform various songs going back the last 75 years, ranging from hits by Bruno Mars and Beyoncé to “Sing, Sing, Sing” and “9 to 5.”
Since the troupe’s goal is to “touch every emotion in the body,” the performance will be a rollercoaster for viewers, Roberts says. “When you ride a rollercoaster, you ride all the way up to the top, and then you’re very anxious about what you’re going to feel when you get to the top of that rollercoaster,” he says. “When you get to the top of the rollercoaster, and you go down, you scream, and you holler, and you’re thrilled, and you’re excited, and you’ve got tears in your eyes, and you’re just overwhelmed, and then it slows down at the end, and then you want to do it all over again. That’s what our show is. People are going to want to ride it over and over again—you’re going to want to see it over and over again.”