Curriculum



A Broad Curriculum Individualized For Outstanding Results

Our full clinic curriculum includes many unique features that prepare Drum Majors to be leaders musically and personally, both on the field and in other areas of their lives. Students are divided into teams of 15-20, where they receive instruction in conducting and marching fundamentals. These teams are led by experienced music educators, also former drum majors. The instructors are assisted by counselors who are themselves experienced musicians and/or drum majors. All of our staff provide role models as conductors, musicians, and leaders. In addition to their conducting team, all students receive instruction in private conducting lessons and both large and small group leadership sessions.

Our full clinic includes the following experiences:

Conducting

First and foremost, DMC students are prepared to become the musical leaders of their bands on the field. An intensive curriculum in conducting establishes solid fundamentals of posture, clarity of beat, and expressiveness in conducting.

Conducting instruction is done in teams of 15-20 students, in private lessons with every student, and in classes dealing with specific challenges and advanced conducting skills. In one of Sycamore DMC’s unique features, all students get to conduct a live band of their peers and receive both live and digitally recorded feedback from instructors.

Leadership

Through large and small class sessions, as well as a variety of focused experiences, students are prepared to lead by example, in words, and in deeds. Drum majors face many challenges when asked to lead their peers and assist the staff of their high school band. Through effective classes and real world training, we prepare students to meet challenges and help turn ordinary marching band seasons into extraordinary experiences. With this training under their belt, Sycamore DMC alumni have gone on to be drum majors of award-winning high school marching bands, drum corps, and university marching bands. Throughout the week, students are invited to share their experiences, learn from other students, and connect with drum majors from around the midwest. Our vast network of DMC alumni continue to support drum majors even after the camp ends, as they face challenges throughout their fall marching band seasons. 

Marching Fundamentals and Teaching Strategies

Not only is it important for drum majors to look good on the field and be great examples of technique for underclassmen in their bands, often drum majors are called upon to help teach the new members marching skills. We make sure that DMC drum majors are prepared to assist their band staff with these duties without ever getting in the way of instruction.

A Wide Variety of Class Offerings

Students choose sessions that will help them deal with their particular situations, strengths, and challenges as drum majors. Class choices include sessions on advanced leadership challenges, specific conducting concerns, advanced salute techniques, and blocking and cleaning drill, among many others.