The Academy Drum and Bugle Corps

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The Academy
The Academy logo.png
LocationTempe, Arizona
DivisionWorld Class
DirectorMark Richardson
Championship titles

The Academy Drum & Bugle Corps (also known as simply "The Academy") is a World Class junior competitive drum and bugle corps based in Tempe, Arizona. The corps is a member of Drum Corps International (DCI).[1]

History[edit | edit source]

In 2001, a group of people gathered in the Phoenix, Arizona area with the intent of starting a drum and bugle corps. They formed the Board of Directors of the Arizona Academy of the Performing Arts, a non-profit organization with the goal "...of enhancing the culture of music, dance, and the performing arts in Arizona." They then formed The Academy Brass & Percussion Ensemble, which made numerous local appearances during the summers of 2001–03, including at the D&B competition the organization sponsors, the Southwest Corps Connection.[2]

In the summer of 2004, the corps added a color guard, changed the name to The Academy Drum and Bugle Corps, and entered the field of competition. Marching a short season of only four weeks and six shows in Arizona and California, the corps was undefeated in Division II.[3] The next year, the corps expanded its boundaries, performing in 10 shows, including Drums Along the Rockies, in Denver, and was again undefeated in Division II. 2006 was The Academy's most successful season. The corps appeared in shows in seven states, including the DCI Division II/III World Championships in Madison, Wisconsin, where the corps capped their third undefeated season with the Division II title.[4]

In 2007, The Academy moved into Division I (now World Class) competition. That was their most successful season in the class placing 13th, until the 2016 corps finished 11th at the DCI World Championships.[5]

The Academy assembled a 100+ member brass, percussion, and auxiliary ensemble of members and alumni that performed outside the University of Phoenix Stadium prior to the Pro Bowl and Super Bowl XLIX and at the National Football League Experience, "an interactive theme park of all things football," during the week of January 25–February 1, 2015.[6]

In 2016, The Academy had their most successful season since moving to World Class, placing in the top 12 at all three DCI regionals. At the DCI World Championships in Indianapolis, The Academy placed 11th, becoming the first corps to make its Finals debut since the Seattle Cascades in 2002.

Sponsorship[edit | edit source]

The Academy Drum and Bugle Corps is sponsored by the Arizona Academy of the Performing Arts (AAPA), a 501 (c)(3) musical organization that has a Board of Directors, corps director, and staff assigned to carry out the organization's mission of, "...building great people through great performances." The Executive Director is Mark Richardson.[7] In addition to the drum and bugle corps, the Arizona Academy also sponsors The Academy Winter Youth Guard[8] and The Academy Summer Youth Guard,[9] two introductory color guard activities; and Phenom, which made the transition from being a SoundSport group to an Open Class Drum and Bugle corps in 2020.[10]

Show summary (2001–2022)[edit | edit source]


Gold background indicates DCI Championship; pale blue background indicates DCI Class Finalist; pale green background indicates DCI semifinalist.

Year Theme Repertoire Score Placement
2001 Excerpts from
Drum Corps Past
Malambo (Finale from Estancia) by Alberto Ginastera / Amber Waves by Morton Gould /
When a Man Loves a Woman by Calvin Lewis and Andrew Wright
--- ---
2002 Ya Gotta Try by Sammy Nestico / Grand Canyon Fanfare by James Newton Howard /
Cadillac of the Skies (from Empire of the Sun) by John Williams
--- ---
2003 A Young Person's Guide to the Orchestra by Benjamin Britten / Vide Cor Meum (from Hannibal) by Hans Zimmer /
The Challenge & Promise (from Millennium Celebration) by Gavin Greenaway
--- ---
2004 Debut Symphony for Brass and Percussion (mvt III) by Alfred Reed / Chanson Melancolique by Morley Calvert /
Jubilation from Symphony for Brass and Timpani by Herbert Haufrecht
--- ---
2005 Piano Concerto No. 2 by Dmitri Shostakovich --- ---
2006 ¡danzón! Rafael Hernández 95.625 1st
Div. II
2007 The Chase The Chase / The Villain / The Hero / The Woman / At the Jitterbug Club / The Love Theme / The Chase / Conclusion
All original compositions by The Academy staff
84.50 13th
2008 Vienna Nights Freud’s Dream / Mozart’s Theme / Café Life / Gallop / Notturno / Finale-Alla Turka
All from Vienna Nights by Philip Wilby
78.85 18th
2009 The Ascent Call of the Mountain (from Gates of Gold) by Joseph Curiale / An Alpine Symphony by Richard Strauss /
Kingfishers Catch Fire by John Mackey
83.75 14th
2010 Strangers In Paradise Overture (from Prince Igor) by Alexander Borodin / Aquarium (from Carnival of the Animals) by Camille Saint-Saëns /
Selections from Prince Igor, Polovstian Dances & Chorus (From Prince Igor) by Alexander Borodin
84.05 14th
2011 (RE) The Little Fugue in G Minor by Johann Sebastian Bach / Lux Aurumque by Eric Whitacre / Fly by Ludovico Einaudi /
Lollapalooza by John Adams
82.65 15th
2012 Left of Spring:
Stravinsky Revisited
Rite of Spring by Igor Stravinsky /
Epilogue & The Song of Purple Summer (from Spring Awakening) by Duncan Sheik and Steven Sater /
81.90 15th
2013 Piano Man Wilkommen (from Cabaret) by John Kander and Fred Ebb / Alabama Song by Kurt Weill and Bertolt Brecht /
Falling In Love Again by Friedrich Hollaender and Sammy Lerner /
Piano Concerto No. 2 Mvt. 1 by Dmitri Shostakovich / Piano Man by Billy Joel
78.20 19th
2014 Vanity Fair Fanfare-Rondeau from 1st Suite de symphonies by Jean-Joseph Mouret / Crown Imperial by William Walton /
What a Wonderful World by Bob Thiele and George David Weiss / Dance of the Hours by Amilcare Ponchielli /
Jazz Suite # 2, Waltz #2 by Dmitri Shostakovich / Hungarian Rhapsody #2 by Franz Liszt /
Symphony # 7, 2nd Mvt. by Ludwig van Beethoven / Paris Sketches by Martin Ellerby
81.875 16th
2015 A Step in Time Music from "Mary Poppins"
I– Introduction–Chim Chim Cher-ee by The Sherman Brothers /
A Shooting Star by George Stiles, Anthony Drewe, and The Sherman Brothers
II–A Spoonful of Sugar by The Sherman Brothers /
Practically Perfect by George Stiles, Anthony Drewe, and The Sherman Brothers /
Galop from Masquerade Suite by Aram Khachaturian
III– Step in Time by The Sherman Brothers / IV– Feed the Birds by The Sherman Brothers
V– Supercalifragilisticexpialidocious by The Sherman Brothers
81.825 15th
2016 Drum Corpse Bride Corpse Bride (Main Titles) by Danny Elfman / Romeo & Juliet by Sergei Prokofiev /
Sorcerer's Apprentice by Paul Dukas / Suggestion Diabolique by Sergei Prokofiev /
Unchained Melody by Alex North & Hy Zaret / Piano Sonata No. 2, Op. 35 (The Funeral March) by Frédéric Chopin
86.100 11th
2017 By a Hare Peer Gynt Suite no. 1, Morning Mood by Edvard Grieg / Hunting Wabbits by Gordon Goodwin /
Overture to The Barber of Seville by Gioachino Rossini / Danse Bohéme by Georges Bizet / Ride of the Valkyries by Richard Wagner /
Habanera by Georges Bizet / Hungarian Rhapsody by Frantz Liszt / Anvil Chorus by Giuseppe Verdi
84.188 14th
2018 Academic The Imitation Game by Alexandre Desplat / Annie Lisle by H. S. Thompson /
Academic Festival Overture by Johannes Brahms / The School for Scandal (Overture) by Samuel Barber /
The Four Sections by Steve Reich / Keating's Triumph by Maurice Jarre
84.563 15th
2019 The Bridge Between Dance 1. First Movement by Oliver Davis / Equilibrium by Paul Lovatt-Cooper / London Bridge Is Falling Down (Traditional) /
Bridge Over Troubled Water by Paul Simon / Horizons by Paul Lovatt-Cooper / Original Music by Steven Vento
84.300 15th
2020 Season cancelled due to the COVID-19 pandemic
2021 Exposed Fame by David Bowie / Lingus by Michael League (Snarky Puppy) / Paparazzi by Lady Gaga /
Bury a Friend by Billie Eilish O'Connell & Finneas O'Connell / Everybody Hurts by R.E.M. /
Rhapsody on a Theme of Paganini by Sergei Rachmaninoff / Hello It's Me by Lou Reed (recorded with John Cale)
2022 A World of My Creation Prelude by Steve Vento / Alice's Theme by Danny Elfman / Barber of Seville by Gioachino Rossini /
Oompa Loompa by Anthony Newly and Leslie Bricusse / Anthem by Bjoern Ulvaeus and Benny Goran /
Metropolitan Theme by Laurence Roger Fast / Pure Imagination by Anthony Newly and Leslie Bricusse
82.200 16th

References[edit | edit source]

  1. "Corps". Drum Corps International. Retrieved 24 February 2018.
  2. "History". Arizona Academy of the Performing Arts. Retrieved March 15, 2015.
  3. "Out of Nowhere — the Arizona Academy story". Drum Corps World. August 2004. Retrieved March 15, 2015.
  4. "2006 Scores for The Academy". Maher Associates, Inc./ Retrieved March 15, 2015.
  5. "Song History for The Academy". Maher Associates, Inc./ Retrieved March 15, 2015.
  6. "The Academy is ready for the Super Bowl stage". Drum Corps International. January 28, 2015. Retrieved April 25, 2015.
  7. "Board of Directors". Arizona Academy of the Performing Arts. Retrieved March 15, 2015.
  8. "Announcing the 2015 Academy Winter Youth Guard". Arizona Academy of the Performing Arts. Retrieved May 20, 2015.
  9. "Announcing the 2015 Academy Summer Youth Guard". Arizona Academy of the Performing Arts. Retrieved May 20, 2015.
  10. "HOME". Phenom. Retrieved 2019-11-21.
  11. "The Academy/Repertoire". DCX: The Drum Corps Xperience. Retrieved 1 March 2018.

External links[edit | edit source]