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Max Dotson, a Troopers Drum & Bugle Corps member from Bradenton, Florida, listens to a coach during a pause in rehearsal June 5 at the Wyoming State Fairgrounds in Douglas. The Troopers will host Drums Along the Rockies and perform along with three other corps Friday night. 

Their 60-year history informs everything they do.

The way they look, the way they sound, the way they march.

The Troopers Drum & Bugle Corps hosts Drums Along the Rockies — Casper Edition at 7 p.m. today at Natrona County High School Stadium. Gates open at 6 p.m., the stadium box office at 4 p.m. Tickets range from $20 to $50, with senior citizen and group discounts available.

The Troopers are an elite squad of brass and percussion musicians, along with a color guard. They perform around the country.

Joining the Troopers will be West Coast travel partners Seattle Cascades, Oregon Crusaders from Portland and Pacific Crest from Diamond Bar, California. Each corps will perform its 2018 competitive show, which lasts just more than 10 minutes.

The Troopers, as host corps, take the field last just after 8 p.m. They will then perform an encore and a drum-off with students from Vibes Fine & Performing Arts studio in Casper.

Among those in attendance will be more than 100 Troopers alumni who are in town for a 60th anniversary reunion.

Local alumni were introduced to this year’s corps earlier this summer, as the Troopers conducted all-day rehearsals in Douglas and Casper from May 23 to June 18, when they left for the first half of their nationwide tour.

After a pizza snack and bidding family farewell, the Troopers will depart Friday evening for Cheyenne, where they will rehearse on Saturday before making their way to Denver for Drums Along the Rockies at Mile High Stadium on Saturday evening.

The Cascades will entertain the audience with “What Goes Around,” including the hymn normally reserved for church, “Ave Maria,” and “What Goes Around .. Comes Around,” written by Justin Timberlake among others.

In 2002, the Cascades became the first Pacific Northwest corps to qualify for the Finals at the Drum Corps International World Championships.

The Crusaders program is titled, “Redrum,” and evokes an orchestral turned to brass and percussion feel, with numbers including “Danse Macabre,” and “Symphony for Organ and Orchestra.”

The Crusaders have been in DCI’s World Class or top tier since 2013.

Pacific Crest brings a decidedly Hollywood program with “Here’s to the Ones Who Dream,” featuring all movie music from “La La Land,” “the Artist,” and “Smash.”

In its first trip to the DCI World Championships in 2003, the corps earned a semifinal spot. The corps celebrates its 25th anniversary in 2018.

By now, Troopers followers know that the 2018 program, “The New Road West,” is a mix of old and new, with visual and musical nods to the past 60 years. Music includes “Welcome to the Black Parade,” by My Chemical Romance, “Both Sides Now,” from Joni Mitchell and two original pieces by the Troopers’ music director and brass arranger Robert W. Smith.

What is not listed in the repertoire are the tucked-in notes that longtime Troopers fans will most remember.

Follow community news editor Sally Ann Shurmur on Twitter



Community News Editor

Sally Ann Shurmur arrived at the Star-Tribune to cover sports two weeks after graduating from the University of Wyoming and now serves as community news editor. She was raised in Laramie and is a passionate fan of Cowboys football, food and family.

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