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The high school activity of marching band is something that thousands of young adults participate in across the country. Usually the students play until they graduate, some even play at their college, but there are a select few who go above and beyond. The major leagues, the big time, the greatest stage that can be played upon is through Drum Corps International and two boys from South Oldham High School, Aaron Bailie and Greg Deinlein, have been selected to live their dream.
The selection process is long and rigorous for someone to be accepted into DCI. Starting in the summer all participants must stay at overnight camps from Friday morning until Sunday night once a month for intense training and tryouts. Throughout the camps students are “let go” or “called back” to weed out the competition until the select few are given a DCI contract to compete in the fall competitions.
But Bailie and Deinlein are not the typical marching band duo. Playing all four years in high school, Deinlein finally met his goal of becoming a part of DCI after graduation while Bailie achieved the glory going into his senior year at South Oldham.
“It is crazy that I am finally here, I have been dreaming about this for a long time,” Bailie said.
The rare goal of being chosen for DCI is not so rare to South Oldham’s band director Ryan McAllister. In fact, McAllister has had several students be selected for DCI.
“It is an honor for students to be chosen, it’s a good reflection on are program and hopefully we can continue the success,” McAllister said.
Bailie, going into his senior year of high school, will be able to bring back some experience to his fellow band members when the school year starts. The DCI is a step up for him but he can’t forget about where it all began.
“I will definitely be able to help my band members, the notes are harder there are more people and it’s all faster but I can handle it,” Bailie said.
The world of competitive drum and bugle corps is an intense, choreographed musical experience staged on football stadium fields by students achieving high levels of excellence in performance. Bailie and Deinlein have achieved the incredible feat of being accepted into DCI that will change the community and themselves for the better. Bailie and Deinlein are at the top level and near the end.
“This is it, the final level, time to live out my dream,” Bailie said.
Story by Billy Rutledge
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