DCAT Chorus



The DCAT Purr-spective

Purr-spective logo

The Newsletter of the Drum Corps Alumni of Toronto - August 2018

DCAT (Drum Corps Alumni Toronto) is an organization dedicated to the preservation and joy of Drum & Bugle Corps camaraderie, bringing together past members, relatives, friends, and associates in a social environment for the purpose of companionship and musical activities.

Dunfield July 29, 2018

by Sandy Hale

The DCAT Chorus put on a GREAT show at the Dunfield Retirement Residence. The accoustics of the room were excellent for our 24 singers and the residents responded well to our sound and repertoire. We saw many smiles and heard plenty of voices singing along with us! And, there were only 2 "sleepers" who even slept through Joe's horn intros!


Upcoming Performances

Friday September 7, 2018 at Wexford Residence
1860 Lawrence Ave. E.
2 PM

Wednesday September 26, 2018 at VIVA Retirement Home Pickering
1881 Glengrove Rd. Pickering
3 PM

Saturday September 29, 2018 at Sunnybrook Veteran's Centre "K" Wing
2075 Bayview Ave.
2 PM

Love of Music 2018

Sunday October 14, 2018 at St. Francis Centre for Community Arts and Culture
78 Church Street South, Ajax
3 PM

DCAT Chorus members are excited to present LOVE OF MUSIC 2018, on Sunday October 14 at 3 PM! The program will include a wonderful variety of music, representative of the chorus' repertoire from 1994 to 2018. The theatre is fully accessible for all. Tickets will be on sale soon ($25 each).

TO THE CHORUS: October 14 is fast approaching and there is much work to be done as we prepare for the show. DO YOUR HOMEWORK! Learn those lyrics! Sing in the shower! Sing in the car! Sing in your sleep! Sing!

Members' News

by Sandy Hale

Pat Ison

The trip to the G.A.S. 2018 reunion was difficult for Pat Ison, as she learned that her son had been rushed to hospital with a heart attack. Pat received a call from her husband, Reg, about an hour outside Binghamton, so there was no talk of turning back. We know now that Neil Ison is doing well, but the weekend was indeed very challenging for Pat. She showed her typical strength and determination, maintained constant communication with her family and 'never missed a beat' in either of her DCAT and Purrfections performances. Well done, Pat.

John "Parky" Parkinson

We were all happy to hear Parky in the bass section once again. Welcome back, Parky, and please thank your daughter for keeping us updated while you were in hospital.

From Marion Shearer

"I am very blessed that I got through the chemo treatments as well as I did, as they were rather challenging. I still have congestion in the mornings but this clears by the afternoon and I feel better and better. Singing with DCAT has been a blessing in exercising my lungs and helping me get rid of the cancer.

I am now using some alternative electro-magnetic treatments several times a week and one side-effect is not only feeling healthier, but I now have the best fingernails since my 20's!

I am climbing on my horse more often each week and he is taking great care of me while I build up my muscles to add a little occasional trotting."

We are all so happy to see and hear how well you are doing, Marion. You are amazing!

Les Miserables Youth Production

During the July 20th weekend, some of the chorus attended the production of Les Miserables, presented by the First Act Youth Company. Wyatt and Tara Gill's daughter, Payton, was part of the production. All who attended were 'blown away' by the professionalism shown by these young people. Their dramatic and vocal abilities were outstanding and their total involvement in all aspects of the production was impressive! Payton, we sincerely look forward to seeing what you do next.

From Gord Irvine

Gord's grandson, Ben Majerly, is very busy with the Burlington Teen Tour Band since June. Highlights of their summer activities include the Sound of Music parade and the Canada Day parade in Burlington, 4th of July parades in the U.S., Joseph Brant festivities, Cactus festival in Dundas. They are also proud to be the regular band for the Argonaut games. Check their website to see and hear some of their wonderful performances. Congratulations, Ben!

Ben Majerly

Tales From The Tundra

by Annie Watson

G.A.S. May 3 - 6, 2018

It has been more than three months since the 2018 reunion. I will try to refresh your memories (a challenge for some of us at this stage of our lives).

Thursday - Arrival in Binghamton New York

By 5 PM Thursday evening everyone in our chorus was accounted for and ready to rehearse. We ran through the show, corrected mistakes and by the end of the hour a feeling of "we are ready to do this" was apparent. Then the group headed to Cortese for dinner. The cuisine was delicious and the wonderful atmosphere added to the start of our weekend.

Friday - Getting Ready for the Shows

Friday was busy with rehearsals, catching up with old friends and of course, a trip or two to Boscov's Department Store. Most of the chorus members decided to have an early meal before the evening's opening ceremonies. On a personal note, Joe and I went to The Lost Dog. Seated across from us were three people who had bags tucked under their table and we determined that they held musical instruments. Joe and I chatted with them and found out that they were a cellist and two violinists, members of the Binghamton Symphony Orchestra and were performing a Mozart concert that evening. They were most interested in what we were doing in their city and were fascinated with the drum corps idiom and impressed that it would bring so many people together for a reunion. This is another example of how music brings us all together no matter who you are, where you are. Music moves us.

Friday evening's entertainment demonstrated once again the variety in what each unit was offering. The Bon Bons presentation was sweet, lyrical and very well-performed. The Skyliners chorus entertained with some familiar classics, including 'Sweet Caroline' with J.D. inviting us all to join in. The DCAT performance of 'Grease' was very entertaining and crowd-pleasing and had many in the audience singing along. The comedy routines were well received and we all had a good time.

The rest of Friday evening was dedicated to socializing and dancing. Personally I always enjoy watching the "group" or line dances which are performed mostly by women, but I am still unable to learn the technique! Over the years the crowd seems to become sparse as the evening progresses. Is this a sign of our age? Perhaps, but the smiles on the faces as we leave the ballroom say "we did have a great time".

Talent Show Saturday

This portion of the weekend begins at 9:55 AM with a Call to the Colours by Duke Terreri, followed by the National Anthems.

As with much of the rest of the weekend, the talent was varied and entertaining. Here is a partial list of performances:

Preston Alumni Band; The Purrfections folk music styles; Class Brass with a few Americans joining in; St. Joe's Act 1 and 2 with Don Allen conducting; Skyliners Percussion - Jack and Joe; The New Yorkers; The Silver Leaves; St. Lucy's; various solos and trios; Archer Epler, who last year celebrated 85 years as a drum corps. Musical selections ranged from 'Send in the Clowns', 'Sweet Caroline', 'Stardust', The Rocky Theme and tunes by John Fogarty and John Denver - the list goes on and on. The afternoon ends with a mass drum corps playing the Drum Corps Anthem, once again bringing tears to many eyes.

Saturday Evening Gala

I have said this many times, but we do all clean up well, don't we?

Bon Bons and DCAT Chorus presented the National Anthems and the Lord's Prayer . The tribute to deceased members followed.

Dinner, including those delicious cabbage rolls, was excellent. There was lots of chatter and laughter, followed by a video of G.A.S. highlights and The Parade of Uniforms - over 20 participants this year.

Sunday Morning

The breakfast buffet is a time of happy/sad - time to say 'good-bye, stay well ' and 'see you next year'. How lucky we are to experience this weekend each year!

"We do not remember days, we remember moments" - Cesare Pavese

G.A.S. 2019

This is a reminder that the reunion will be held in April, one month earlier next year, at the Hilton Double Tree!

Once again I have enjoyed contributing to the Purrspective! Until next time... annie in the tundra

"Without music...life would be a mistake!" - Friedrich Nietzche

Other Drum Corps News

by Annie and Joe Watson

The Audubon Bon Bons have an annual Memorial Day breakfast fund-raiser. "To keep the memory alive", a promise that the Bon Bons made to Bill Bernert, $500 of the funds raised are presented to a deserving girl in Jersey Surf, to help with her summer touring fees. Well done!

Tom Mellors of the Jolly Jesters, initiated a twice yearly luncheon which now also includes members who played in many other drum corps in Southern Ontario. The Blue Goose in Etobicoke, definitely not a 5 star establishment, is the venue for this happy gathering.

The 'Super Corps' - which includes a number of DCAT members, has been formed to play at Octoberfest in Kitchener on Thanksgiving weekend. The marching band consists of 252 members and the stage band numbers 42. Wyatt Gill is on the executive and will offer more details closer to the event.

A Celebration of Life was held for Wilf Roblin, former Drum Major of the Toronto Signals and the Kawartha Kavaliers. Wilf passed away unexpectedly in June. The Celebration was a fine tribute to a great man who contributed significantly to drum corps.

And lastly, something to think about...

by Sandy Hale

From 6 Reasons To Sing Your Heart Out For Health

Do your nightly snores, sputters, and sleep apnea have the dog (and your spouse) howling for respite? Luckily, you may find some sleepy solace (for you, your spouse, and the family pet) if you take up singing.

According to a 2008 snoring study published by the U.S. National Library of Medicine those who sing, snore far less. The study monitored the snoring of a group of choral singers and compared them to non-song birds. The study concluded that singers had stronger airway muscles, which drastically reduced the music in the tune of zzzzzzzzzzzz (aka: sawing logs) during sleep.

Any comments from DCAT members?