Phantom Regiment - Drum & Bugle Corps won the 2008 DCI Drum Corps International Championship yesterday with a evocative, powerfully emotional show based on the story of Spartacus, the gladiator and slave-leader who led an army of slaves against Rome in the Servile Wars.
The 1960 movie with Kirk Douglas has a famous scene that has been quoted and parodied, where the Romans demand Spartacus come forward, and his fellow slaves say “I am Spartacus” to try to sacrifice themselves to protect their leader.
Regiment did not represent the mass crucifixion on the Appian Way, but did use stylized, theatrical violence in an operatic way, to show the tension between the Romans and the slaves. Their entrance to the field was epic, with “slave-master” hornplayers mimicing the brutal treatment slaves received at the hands of their Roman captors. The drum major Will Pitts was even wheeled out on his conductor’s podium, as though it was a chariot or throne and he was the Roman Emperor.
There was love, there was betrayal, there were changing loyalties, and there were murders. Words don’t describe it, so perhaps join DCI’s Fan Network and view it for yourself.
Regiment did drum corps fans proud this season with this show, and not only won the title, but the high percussion trophy as well on awesome-sounding Dynasty equipment. Congratulations to the 2008 Phantom Regiment members and staff. Paul Rennick, I’m so proud of you - please keep producing the awesome drumlines you have been, and let me keep reliving my youth! I will never forget this show!
I am Spartacus!