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Utopian Entertainment in Drum Corps

Utopian Entertainment in Drum Corps - Utopian Entertainment...

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Utopian Entertainment in Drum Corps Jesse Glenn September 24, 2007 English 030 In "Entertainment and Utopia," author Richard Dyer explains what entertainment is and
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Dyer's argument is that professional entertainment is utopian in nature because "utopianism is contained in the feeling that it embodies" (Dyer 222). The argument is backed with what Dyer believes are the five pillars of utopian in entertainment: energy, abundance, intensity, transparency, and community (Dyer 224-5) conveyed through "representational and, importantly, non-representational signs" (Dyer 222). Although Dyer makes his case with musicals, he believes that utopian entertainment "can also be seen at work, mutatis mutandis , in other forms" (Dyer 221). The form of entertainment that I am analyzing is drum corps. I was was a member of the White Sabers Drum and Bugle Corps of Dansville, New York in the 2007 season's show Gladiator . Therefore I am going to use my own experience to analyze the entertainment in a drum corps using Dyer's description of utopian entertainment and the means in which it is presented. Drum corps is a competitive form of entertainment that consists of a musical ensemble that marches in preconceived patterns to accompany the music; it is somewhat analogous to being a higher level marching band without woodwind instruments. The musical ensemble is strictly brass and percussion instruments; the percussion is split up into the marching portion, or the battery, and the front ensemble, or the pit. The drum corps also has a color guard, which enhances the visual aspect of the show with dance and motion using equipment such as different colored flags, artificial rifles and sabers, and occasionally other props. To receive a good score, the drum corps' visual and musical aspects must be performed at the highest caliber, tie in well together, and express the desired emotions. With this general description, one can now analyze how this form of entertainment can produce the same utopian emotions that musicals do. Glenn 2
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