Madison Scouts Announce KC Michel as Program Coordinator

The Madison Scouts are pleased to announce that KC Michel will serve as Program Coordinator and lead the design team for the 2015 season. KC, an alumnus of the Scouts (1984-86), is currently the color guard director at Westfield High School in Spring, Texas where his program has won a record 13 state championships and numerous regional titles.

“I am excited to bring the creative vision of KC to the Madison Scouts,” stated Chris Komnick, Executive Director. “KC understands the activity and has a great appreciation for the brand of the Madison Scouts. He has a reputation of maximizing the talents of his design team and we’re surrounding him with some great people.”

“I look forward to returning to the Scouts and working with such an iconic corps,” said KC. “As an alumnus, I can appreciate the history and values of the organization. I look forward to building upon that legacy with show designs that leverages the brand and connect with audiences.”

KC has been involved in the drum corps activity since age 12. He performed with and instructed the Blue Knights, the Sky Ryders, and the Madison Scouts. Most recently KC was the visual coordinator for the Phantom Regiment from 2011-2013.

KC is active throughout the U.S. and Great Britain as a clinician and choreographer at numerous camps and clinics and continues to adjudicate throughout pageantry circuits.

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Madison Scouts Announce Scott Boerma as Music Director

The Madison Scouts are pleased to announce that Scott Boerma will serve as the corps’ Music Director and Brass Arranger. After serving as the music arranger for the Madison Scouts from 1989-2006, Scott returns in 2015 for his 19th year in this role. After marching in the Scouts’ baritone section in 1984 & 1985, Boerma was a member of the brass staff from 1986 through 2006, serving as the caption head for most of those years.

“Scott has a long and successful history with the organization and is responsible for advancing and enhancing the signature sound of the Madison Scouts for nearly two decades,” said Chris Komnick, Executive Director. “Scott and I marched our two seasons together (’84, ’85), so it’s especially exciting to reunite with him. His career speaks for itself, and the Scouts organization is privileged to have him as an alumnus and now as our Music Director.”

Scott Boerma is currently the Director of Bands and Associate Professor of Music at Western Michigan University, where he conducts the University Symphonic Band and Western Winds. Prior to this appointment, he was the Associate Director of Bands and Director of the Michigan Marching Band at the University of Michigan.  Before those positions, he was the Director of Bands at Eastern Michigan University.

Boerma earned his Doctor of Musical Arts degree in wind conducting at Michigan State University and his Master of Music degree in music education from the University of Michigan, where he also studied composition with Pulitzer-Prize winning composer William Bolcom. He received his Bachelor of Music degree in music education from Western Michigan University.

An active composer, Boerma’s concert band works have been performed by many outstanding ensembles, including “The President’s Own” Marine Band, the Dallas Wind Symphony, the University of North Texas Wind Symphony, the Tokyo Kosei Wind Orchestra, the University of Illinois Wind Symphony, the University of Michigan Symphony & Concert Bands, the Interlochen Arts Camp High School Symphonic Band, and the BOA Honor Band of America, to name just a few. His works have been heard in such venues as Carnegie Hall, Hill Auditorium, the Myerson Symphony Center, the Krannert Center for the Performing Arts, and at the Chicago Midwest International Band and Orchestra Clinic.

Boerma is a member of the College Band Directors National Association, American Society of Composers, Authors and Publishers, the American School Band Directors Association, Phi Mu Alpha Professional Music Fraternity and an honorary member of Kappa Kappa Psi and Tau Beta Sigma Band Fraternities.

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James Sparling Appointed Madison Scouts Percussion Director

The Madison Scouts are pleased to announce the appointment of James Sparling as Percussion Director and Arranger. James has been with the Scouts since the 2012 season, recently serving as caption head and arranger. In addition to the Scouts, James is currently the Director of Percussion at Plymouth-Canton Educational Park (Michigan) and works with WGI units Infinity Percussion and Redline Percussion.

“James represents a new generation of instructors and arrangers in our activity,” stated Chris Komnick, Executive Director. “His broad range of teaching and performance experiences are in line with our educational mission. Percussionists in our program will get a great educational experience under James’ direction.”

James received his degree in Music Education with a minor in Architecture at Miami University. As a performer, he played tenors with Trinity Indoor Percussion Ensemble (2000), Music City Mystique (2001, WGI World Champions), Santa Clara Vanguard Drum and Bugle Corps (2001), Glassmen Drum and Bugle Corps (2002), and Rhythm X (2003-2004). As an instructor, he taught on the percussion staff for the Glassmen (2003), the Madison Scouts (2004-2006), the Carolina Crown (2007-2008), the Cadets (2009-2011), and RhythmX (2005-2013).

James has taught privately for several years and served as a Percussion Mentor at Tower Heights Middle School (2007), Director of Percussion at Bellbrook HS/MS (2007-2008), Assistant Band Director at Baker MS/Fairborn HS (2010-2011), Director of Percussion at Kettering Fairmont HS (2009-2013), and Director of Percussion at Seminole HS (2013).

James has been heavily involved in the world music ensemble, Global Rhythms, where he served as Percussion Coordinator and Arranger (2004-2006).  This ensemble has led him to perform across the globe and work with Grammy winners Glen Velez and Jamal Mohammed, Ghatam Khartick’s heARTbeat, Musafir, Jeff Queen, Michael Burritt, Anthony Cirone, Indian film composer A.R. Rahman, Nelly Furtado, and Lenny Kravitz. He continues to perform with this group annually.

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Madison Scouts Announce James Mason to Retire

The Madison Scouts today announced that James Mason has decided to retire as Artistic Director of the corps.

“In the fall of 2009, James made an incredible commitment to the organization to provide his artistic and organizational guidance at a critical juncture for the organization,” said Chris Komnick, Executive Director. “Over the course of the past five seasons, he has created amazing productions that have helped the corps reestablish its competitive footing while delivering a positive educational experience for our membership. He has been an incredible mentor to me and shared with us his passion for this activity and the young men we serve.”

James Mason, an alumnus of the Madison Scouts, was also the founding director and program coordinator of the Star of Indiana Drum & Bugle Corps. Under Mason’s artistic leadership, the Scouts returned to being a DCI World Class finalist each of the last five seasons. More importantly, the Scouts recaptured their connection to the audience through his visionary and accessible programming.

Regarding his retirement, Mason stated, “Thank you to the young men that over the past few years gave their time, talent, and treasure to the Madison Scouts. They are true heroes! They go out representing the corps each year, to the best of their ability, with a work ethic that is inspiring. Working with such a group has been humbling. The foundation has been laid and it is a solid one. The brand is back, the DNA is in place, and I wish the organization my very best as it moves into what will be a very bright future.”

“We are extremely thankful for James’ wisdom, creativity, and passion over the past five seasons,” stated Gregg Auby, President of the Board of Directors. “James gave selflessly during a critical time for the organization. He embodies the character of the Madison Scouts.”

“The Madison Scouts organization is forever grateful to James’ contributions,” said Komnick. “He made an important impact on the history of the organization and has been instrumental in my own personal development as the director of this organization. It was a privilege to work and learn from him.”

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Scouts to Participate in DCI Performers Showcase

The Madison Scouts have a long and successful history with Drum Corps International’s Individual and Ensemble contest (I&E), but the corps’ participation has declined over the years due to touring and rehearsal demands. This year the Scouts have recommitted themselves to the event in a big way.

“We have many members who are music education and performance majors, this events provides them an opportunity to perform in a different type of ensemble setting,” stated Executive Director Chris Komnick. “In order to make it a priority, we needed to schedule for this event by providing instructional guidance and rehearsal time throughout the season. We are excited to have 50 members of the corps participating at this year’s event and rest of the corps there to cheer them on.”

After decades known as Drum Corps International’s Individual & Ensemble (I&E) Championship, the event has taken on a new name—the DCI Performers Showcase. Still true to its original format, the Performers Showcase will be presented by System Blue.

Members from World and Open Class corps will compete against each other as part of World Championships Week in Indianapolis, Wednesday, Aug. 6, beginning at 10 a.m. ET.

Each year, this very special event gives corps members the opportunity to show off their individual and group talents, performing solo and ensemble pieces perfected outside of their normal corps rehearsal schedules. Even further, vocal and woodwind categories give members whose primary instruments may not be included in a normal drum corps setting the chance to perform.

The DCI Performers Showcase is a free event and open to the public.

Georgia St. between Capitol & Illinois — Ensembles & Exhibitions
Georgia St. between Illinois & Meridian — Individual Brass & Woodwind Performance
Georgia St. between Meridian & Pennsylvania — Individual Percussion Performance
Arts Garden (110 W. Washington St.) — Visual/Vocal


10:12a – Mason Barnes – Auxiliary Color Guard
10:30a – Terry Hurley – Auxiliary Color Guard
10:36a – DJ Landoll – French Horn
10:36a – Jake Hardy – Flag
10:40a – Brass Quintet (Jesse Wade-Trumpet, Dallas Kiefer-Trumpet, David Wantland-Mello, Macs Reynolds-Euphonium, Rob Esrock-Tuba)
10:48a – Jordan Hunt – Flag
11:00a – Matt Bearden – Flag
11:12a – John Havard – Trumpet
11:12a – Zac Barber – Flag
11:20a – Trombone Octet (Dan Blevins, Taylor Hanson, Jimmy Priester, Marshal Spaulding, Landon Brady, Ben Helmrick, Chris Cusick, Richard Mitchell)
11:42a – Mark Ostermeyer – Baritone/Euphonium
11:42a – Auxiliary Color Guard Ensemble (Thomas Wooldridge, AJ Johnson)
11:48a – Devin Garza – Snare
11:50a – Flag Ensemble (Cristian Gomez, EJ Deleon, Jordan Mower)
11:52a – Bass Drum Ensemble (Sam Schaefer, Zac Sterling, Alex Richey, Nick Grossbard, Michael ‘Rocky’ Rockwell)
12:18p – Kevin Thompson – Snare
12:22p – Vocal Ensemble (Zac Sterling, Andrew Worth, Matt Dinkel, Alexander Chung, Noah Dyer, Stephen Bollinger, Steve Riker, Gabriel Gounaris, Joe Herzog, Kevin Arechavala, Manny Neault, David Arrasmith, Chris Cusick)
12:24p – Scott Dagg – Trumpet
12:48p – Landon Brady – Trombone

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Announcing the “Great Wisconsin Cheesehead Challenge” Fundraising Campaign

The Blue Stars and the Madison Scouts are pleased to announce the “Great Wisconsin Cheesehead Challenge” a 6-day fundraising campaign that pairs two historic Wisconsin drum corps in a head-to-head battle for bragging rights in the Cheesehead state.


Starting at 12:01 a.m., Sunday July 20th, and continuing until 11:59 p.m. Friday the 25th, the two corps will compete against each other in raising funds as they trek across the South from San Antonio to Atlanta. For every $20 collected, the corps advances 1 mile closer on the 1000 mile trip to Atlanta. The first corps to collect $20,000 and reach Atlanta will be crowned “The Big Cheese”. The corps that collects the most donations by midnight Friday (July 25th) wins the overall “Cheesehead Challenge” and requisite bragging rights. At the conclusion of the campaign, the two corps will come together for a joint meal of brats, cheese burgers, and cheese curds in celebration of their Wisconsin heritage.

“We are excited to take on the Madison Scouts in this fundraising campaign,” said Brad Furlano, Executive Director of the Blue Stars. “Both corps are great ambassadors for our Wisconsin communities, now it is time to see which group reigns supreme in the great state of Wisconsin.”

“This is a great way to develop the relationship between our two organizations,” commented Chris Komnick, Executive Director for the Scouts. “We share important histories in the State of Wisconsin and the Cheesehead Challenge is a great way to support our organization by engaging our alumni and fans in this fundraising campaign.”

Donations through the “Great Wisconsin Cheesehead Challenge” and to the respective organizations are tax deductible. Both the Madison Scouts and Blue Stars are non-profit 501(c)(3) organizations. Each corps will promote the challenge to their alumni and fan base while keeping the latest tally of donations on their respective web pages.

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Madison Scouts Spring Training

The Madison Scouts begin their 2014 season by entering the spring training portion of their summer on Friday, May 23rd. This year the corps is training at a new facility in Trafalgar, Indiana. The Indiana FFA Leadership Center will host the Scouts from their early percussion move-ins up through Friday, June 13th. At that time, the Scouts will relocate to East Troy High School in East Troy, WI for the last week of training. The first show of the DCI Tour will be on Friday, June 20th in Rockford, Illinois.


May 17 (Sat) – May 22 (Thu)
Early Percussion Move-Ins in Trafalgar, IN

May 23 (Fri) – June 13 (Fri)
Full Corps Spring Training in Trafalgar, IN

June 14 (Sat) – June 20 (Fri)
Final Week of Spring Training in East Troy, WI (East Troy HS)

June 18 (Wed)
Dress Rehearsal at East Troy High School, 8 p.m.

June 20 (Fri)
First DCI Tour Show in Rockford, IL


Indiana FFA Leadership Center
6595 South 125 West
Trafalgar, IN 46181
Download Map to Trafalgar & FFA Camp

East Troy High School
3128 Graydon Ave
East Troy, WI 53120


Members planning on flying into the Indianapolis Airport (IND) for Spring Training will be picked up via a shuttle at the Indianapolis airport and taken to the FFA Camp in Trafalgar. The time for the shuttle pick up at the Indianapolis airport is 5:00 p.m. ET at the Ground Transportation Center (GTC) across the street from baggage claim. It will arrive in Zone 1 outside the back doors of the GTC around 4:45pm and will leave at 5:00pm sharp. Please allow yourself enough time to get off your flight, get your luggage, and find the GTC before 4:45.

If you need to make alternate arrangements coming to or from Spring Training outside of the shuttle transportation on the 23rd, please contact Kimberly at as soon as possible! You’ll need to give her your flight information (airline, arrival/departure dates and times, etc) so that we may arrange to pick you up.

If you get lost, or your flight gets delayed, or you experience other travel-related trouble, please CALL Kimberly at (304) 638-8950 as soon as the issue arises so we may assist you in your travel endeavors.


The Scouts have volunteer needs in food service and sewing operations throughout spring training. Volunteers will be provided food and lodging with the corps during their service. If you are interested and have availability, please contact us at


Delivery by June 12th
Indiana FFA Leadership Center
MEMBER NAME c/o Madison Scouts
6595 South 125 West
Trafalgar, IN 46181

June 13th through June 18th
MEMBER NAME c/o Madison Scouts
East Troy, WI 53120


Kimberly Pullen, Member Coordinator- (304) 683-8950 –

Corey Jahlas, Assistant Corps Director- (248) 891-2266 –

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Volunteer for the Scouts this Summer

The start of the 2014 DCI season is less than 6 weeks away and the Madison Scouts have several opportunities for you to work with the corps this summer.

Trafalgar, IN – May 23 through June 13
East Troy, WI – June 14 – 20

The corps is needing spring training volunteers to assist with food service and sewing.

June 20 through August 9

We are needing volunteers to assist with food service, sewing, and merchandise sales.


“On-site” volunteers assist when the corps comes to their town (1-2 days). This often includes trips to/from the airport, helping source groceries, making medical runs, washing uniforms, and serving a meal or two. This is a great way to assist the corps with a minimal time committment.

Touring volunteers are provided meals on tour, passes to the shows, and travel on a “sleeper bunk” bus. No specific skills are required, but you need to bring a positive attitude and strong work ethic. The work is hard, but very rewarding as you help 150 young men take the field each day!

You will be working under the direction of the Food Service Manager and be provided basic training that will allow you to assist in the preparation and service of our meal schedule. You need to follow our standards for food preparation and hygiene, prepare meals, and clean up afterwards. A positive attitude is a must as you will be interacting with each member of the corps and staff several times a day.

This team is responsible for making the corps look great. Sewing skills are preferred, but not required. The sewing team will make adjustments and basic repairs to the uniform, guard costume, and flags. As well, this team routinely launders the uniforms on a rotation basis.

Meet firsthand the fans of the Madison Scouts as you help the corps raise money through our retail operations. This job entails a “customer service” focus as we want our retail operations to be professional in presentation and a great experience. Retail experience is a plus. This group travels separately from the corps and their work begins several hours before the show starts. Each location requires that our storefront be assembled, optimized, and taken down afterwards. You need to keep track of inventory, accurately manage cash and credit card transactions, and engage customers during their visit to our store. You need to have an outgoing personality and a knack for retail sales.

We are in need of a driver for our merchandise operations which includes a 26′ box truck towing a 15′ trailer. A CDL is not required, but you do need to be experienced in driving larger size vehicles and towing trailers. The driver is required to drive overnight, meaning you will need to adjust your sleep schedule appropriately. The driver needs to assure the vehicle is fueled and maintained properly, assist with the hookup of the trailer, and follow all of our safety protocals.

To explore opportunities and dates, contact volunteer coordinator Kimberly Pullen at

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Yamaha Establishes Two Music Education Scholarships to Celebrate 30 Years With the Madison Scouts

Yamaha Corporation of America today announced the establishment of two new scholarships to honor the 30-year relationship between the company and the Madison Scouts Drum and Bugle Corps.

Beginning this season, Yamaha will award one $500 scholarship to a corps member of the brass section and another $500 scholarship to a member of the corps’ percussion section. Recipients, who will be chosen by Madison Scouts staff members and announced during the end-of-season corps banquet, must be enrolled in a college or university and be majoring in music education, music performance, music business, or other applicable area of music study. Candidates must also demonstrate the qualities of leadership and good citizenship.

“Yamaha and the Scouts share a deep commitment to music education and the relationship has enabled us to provide our student performers with the best percussion and brass instruments on which to play,” said Chris Komnick, executive director, Madison Scouts. “The new scholarship program is another example of Yamaha’s commitment to the marching arts and to the Madison Scouts and provides another great opportunity for young musicians to develop their talents in the fields of music education and performance.”

The Madison Scouts, a non-profit drum and bugle corps consisting of young men ages 16 to 22, are founding members of Drum Corps International (DCI). The team is rooted in integrity and honesty, with a dedication to personal development and the pursuit of excellence through music and performance arts. Stellar showcases of their tireless drilling can be seen at parades, sporting events and music festivals.

The Scouts became the first DCI corps to use Yamaha instruments and the relationship thrived due to a shared passion for music education. In the last three decades, nearly 5,000 Scouts have benefited from premium, durable instruments and unwavering support from the proficient technicians who designed them. The partnership between the Madison Scouts and Yamaha is the longest standing between any drum corps and instrument manufacturer.

“With everyone’s constant support and nurturing of this revered relationship between Yamaha and the Scouts, we have helped further the advancement of music education,” said Roger Eaton, director of marketing, Band & Orchestral Division, Yamaha Corporation of America. “The Madison Scouts have carried the Yamaha banner with great honor and have lent their expertise to the testing of Yamaha products in the rigors of an outdoor setting and contributed to the development of many landmark instruments.”

About Yamaha

Yamaha Corporation of America (YCA) is one of the largest subsidiaries of Yamaha Corporation, Japan and offers a full line of award-winning musical instruments, sound reinforcement and home entertainment products to the U. S. market. Products include: Yamaha acoustic, digital and hybrid pianos, portable keyboards, guitars, acoustic and electronic drums, band and orchestral instruments, marching percussion products, synthesizers, professional digital and analog audio equipment, Steinberg recording products and Nexo commercial audio products, as well as AV receivers, amplifiers, Blu-ray/CD players, iPod docking systems, home-theater-in-a-box systems, earphones, headphones, sound bars, and its exclusive line of Digital Sound Projectors. YCA markets innovative, finely crafted technology and entertainment products and musical instruments targeted to the hobbyist, education, worship, professional music, installation and consumer markets.

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MADISON MADNESS Bracket Challenge

The Madison Scouts are giving you the chance to win tickets to 2014 DCI World Championships, Drums on Parade Tickets, DVDs, Scouts Tees, and more through their NCAA basketball tourney bracket challenge called MADISON MADNESS.

Between now and March 20th (11 a.m. ET) you can enter the MADISON MADNESS bracket challenge and compete with Scouts alumni and drum corps fans for your chance to reign as the supreme bracketologist.

The winner of MADISON MADNESS will receive four (4) tickets to the DCI World Championships. The “Elite 8″ finishers will all receive prizes including Madison Scouts t-shirts, hats, sweatshirts, performance DVDs, and tickets to the Merrillville Music Festival, Drums on Parade, & The Whitewater Classic.

Each bracket entry is a $10 donation to benefit the Madison Scouts. Or triple your chances with three brackets for $25.

Purchase your bracket entry at where you will receive an email confirmation receipt. In that email you will be provided a link to download a PDF with the complete instructions for playing MADISON MADNESS.

The MADISON MADNESS bracket challenged is being managed at the CBSSports web site where you will need to register your profile, create your brackets, and enter our bracket pool. Players can track their progress daily and the tournament winners will be announced the day after the NCAA title game.

Make the picks and win the tix!


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