Drum Major Problems

ALL Drum Majors have the same problems!
Welcome to the top. It get's lonely up here!! It's alright though. When the other band members are looking up the podium, all they're gonna see is your rear end. xD So feel free to rant, complain, submit, ask, or just talk. Welcome, Drum Majors!
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Asker Anonymous Asks:
Hello, i'm a junior and I plan on auditioning for the DM auditions next month for my senior year. I'm very, very passionate about music and have always put my everything into the band. However, i was put in a position as sophomore to play the baritone sax, and i've been playing it in every ensemble since. I'm worried my band director, who ultimately chooses the DM, will see me as less qualified due to the bari having less challenging music. I'm very worried about how that will impact my chances.
drummajorproblems drummajorproblems Said:

I don’t think that the difficulty of the music will have an effect on how well you conduct, or how well your director thinks you conduct. At least it shouldn’t. Decisions like that should be based on musicianship, leadership skills, a willingness to accept the responsibility, and the clarity of the conducting. 

Asker Anonymous Asks:
I tried for Drum Major for three years, and never made it. Now in my senior year, auditions have started again and it has been causing me a lot of bad emotions and memories. I'm not a bad student, but I've actually been tempted to try and sabotage the practices that the current DMs are doing. I'm not sure what I'm supposed to do to get over this petty selfish thing.
drummajorproblems drummajorproblems Said:

Step one, do not ever try to sabotage someone else’s work, because you know if someone was doing that to you, you’d feel like crap. so just don’t do it.
Step two, consider the possibility that you’re a more valuable player than you are a conductor, and that is nothing to be ashamed about. That’s actually a fantastic thing. 

Asker Anonymous Asks:
I just wanted to rant a little, so you don't have to answer to this. Because of how small my school is, we have to let freshmen try out for DM, (that would be me and my friends.) Only one person who's going to be sophomore next year is trying out, although I feel most of us freshmen would be better for the position. I've been practicing and I feel pretty confident in myself. But how do I know if I'm being over confident? The sophomore thinks he has it. But I don't think he does. Am I being cocky
drummajorproblems drummajorproblems Said:

It kinda depends on the circumstances, to be honest. I would say, at face value, that yes, you’re being a little cocky. But that’s because I know what it’s like to be in your shoes. You’re a freshman, you’re young, I haven’t seen you, or your colleagues and competition conduct, so I can’t say if you are actually being cocky or not. But to an outsider it might look like that. SOO just be careful of how you present yourself. Image is a very big part of being a drum major. 

Asker Anonymous Asks:
Hello! I'm going to be auditioning for Drum Major next Friday for my school. I'm actually kinda nervous about it because I am from the pit . I'm getting help from my brother who been a drum major before but I am just nervous about people doubting my leadership because of my section(our seniors in the pit gave us a bad reputation). I know I shouldn't let their judgment bother me but what if they come up to me and say something about it? Thanks in advance! :D
drummajorproblems drummajorproblems Said:

Well, like you said. Don’t let it get to you. You are not defined by your section. Prove that you can be a great leader, and if they ask you anything about it, tell them exactly that: That you are not the section as a whole. 

Asker Anonymous Asks:
So I have the option to audition for drum major. I went to a clinic today to learn everything, and now I'm thinking that I might not want to do it. Help
drummajorproblems drummajorproblems Said:

If you think you might not want to do it… then don’t. 

Being a drum major is something that you need to be 100% invested in, otherwise it will be miserable for you and your ensemble.

So I’m serious. If you think you don’t want to do it, then don’t

I was announced a member of student leadership today at my collegiate marching band! I thought you guys ought to know!!! :D

Ok…….So DM auditions are coming up and I’m a freshman. I was just wondering if I do get DM how would I read the score, which I play piano so reading all the parts won’t be a problem, but which part should I focus on to conduct with.

Hey there, friend. 
So, something I’ve learned through my endeavors as a music Ed Major is that every part of the score is important. That being said, there’s a great deal of score study involved to decide what’s most important. My best general advice is to look for important pieces of the melody, and countermelodies/accompaniment that we haven’t heard before. Also cues for percussion (especially front ensemble) and parts that go several measures without playing. 

Asker Anonymous Asks:
Hi!Okay so Im a sophomore and I want to try out for drum major for my junior year.. and well honestly, Im really scared.. Hopefully, I'll get over it.. anyways. I was just wondering if you could like give me any tips on where I could look so I can learn how to conduct all the different times signatures. I also know that you have to conduct a song for the audition, and I was wondering if you could also tell me where I could look for all those cool looking things drum majors do? Idk if you
drummajorproblems drummajorproblems Said:

youtube

Asker Anonymous Asks:
A tip for DMs and future DMs: The best piece of advice that my band director gave me while preparing for auditions last year was this: you have to be okay with not making it. If you are not okay with not making it, you need to reevaluate why you're trying out in the first place. It was a tough thing to think about, but I knew that if I didn't make it, the audition process had made me a better musician and a better leader, and I would still be able to be in marching band. I did make it though!!
drummajorproblems drummajorproblems Said:

This is so important!!!

Asker james-catsby Asks:
Hi there! So I was named my band's drum major a few weeks ago.. and I'm really nervous for our mini camp in June! Our last drum major was DM for 3 years so she was pretty experienced. She was awful with authority and no one respected her, though. As of right now my band respects me and my musical accomplishments (luckily) and I don't want to loose that because I wasn't prepared for certain things.. Any tips? (I also don't want to disappoint my band director D:)
drummajorproblems drummajorproblems Said:

Well, the best thing I can say is to continue to accomplish great things as a musician, Solo and ensemble, getting out there and gigging on your own, starting small ensembles are good ways to get things going, and will do nothing but help you improve. But most of all, just don’t stress out too much over it. Your director isn’t going to be disappointed if you make a few mistakes because that person should realize that you are new to the drum majoring experience. Ask your director to help you learn instead of trying to do everything all at once all on your own. He should help you out.