A new drumline is ready to roll at Wartburg.
Alex Valentine, a physics education major, held auditions on Sept. 11 for seven spots on the line which will play percussion works at Wartburg games, pep rallies and parades. The group plans to premiere at Kastle Kapers during Homecoming if they are selected to perform through the audition process or, if ready earlier, the Luther football game.
Valentine has taken the initiative to lead the group under the supervision of former percussionists: Hans Pregler, production manager for Neumann Auditorium and alumna Julie Drewes, visual media manager for Marketing and Communications.
“There’s a spark that’s been missing from campus that I think the drumline can bring back, especially in watching the football games in the student section,” Valentine said.
Valentine, who has been playing drums for 11 years, expressed disappointment as a freshman that the college did not have a drumline.
Equipment for a drumline was donated two years ago by alumna Kate Glenney’s former high school for the specific purpose of having her start a line. An attempt last year to put one together quickly dissolved.
“We have some perfectly good used drum equipment,” Drewes said. “[Glenney] has been trying to get a drumline going for years now, but never got it off the ground.”
The drumline consists of four snare drums, four bass drums, three cymbals and two sets of quads. Drewes and Pregler are working to raise money for harnesses for the drums.
“It’s unheard of for a Division III school to do this because they just don’t have the money for it,” Drewes said. “We have the equipment donated. The most expensive things are under our belt.”
Tyler Creed has been helping Valentine put the line together and is the lead snare drummer. He said now that there is interest, he hopes the group continues to grow.
“We have enough people to have a drumline, but we could definitely use some more committed people to step up and join, even if they have no previous experience with percussion or even music at all,” Creed said.
Valentine and Creed hope to bring in different styles for cadences, or works played exclusively by percussion, but above all create a unique Wartburg sound.
“When we’re coming down the street in the parade, I want people to know, ‘That’s Wartburg,’” Valentine said.
Drewes hopes to boost school spirit with the addition of a drumline to the pep band at football and basketball games.
“We’re looking for something to get kids out of their dorm rooms, come to an event and support our athletes in a fun way,” Drewes said.