Yesterday, the Bluecoats Drum and Bugle Corps, a World Class member and former champion of Drum Corps International, released a statement announcing that the organization was adopting an anti-racism policy. As far as I know, this is the first policy of its kind in the drum corps activity, and one which is incredibly important as this country continues to fight with white supremacist forces, including within it’s own government.
Unfortunately, racism is still an issue in the drum corps activity. The Bluecoats are willing to address that fact openly and set corps policy to specifically address the issue within their organization. While you may not feel this is necessary, current events have shown otherwise, as well as the experiences of drum corps members. It is those members, past, current, and future, who may appreciate a World Class drum corps working to ensure the activity is welcoming to them, starting with their own organization.
Back in June, the Bluecoats Brass Podcast posted an episode entitled “The Black Experience in DCI”, interviewing members and staff who have directly experienced racism in the activity. You can listen to the episode here.
The Dear Dotbook podcast has also looked at racism in the activity in a few of its episodes:
- Black Women in the Marching Arts
- Black Men in Drum Corps
- Science, Ethnicity, Gender, and Band
- Sikhism and the Marching Arts
Please listen to these podcast episodes and learn more about what Black, Indigenous, and people of color experience, both in drum corps and in everyday life. You should also subscribe to these podcasts for the chance to learn more about those who take the field in this activity which we love.