Well, it has been a rather crazy start to the tour! After 3 days of rehearsal in Concord (12 hrs a day) and another 3 days in Leewarden, Netherlands (also 12hrs a day), we put on a number of performances around the city to help promote the Proud Event at which we were featured performers.
These days have been seriously jammed packed. Our 3rd day in the Leewarden featured 2 morning rehearsal blocks from 10am until 5pm, then a performance in the City center around dinner time, followed by further rehearsals from 830pm.
I have been lucky to have an incredibly experienced and helpful group of guys in my section to help me try and keep up with everything that has been going on. Coming in cold with absolutely no experience marching at this kind of level has been very challenging, but working with Nick Arocho, David Kelly, and David "Big D" Hales has been a god-send. I know at times I have frustrated these guys when I have made rookie errors (I'm such a rookie!!!), but they have kept their cool and concentrated on trying to help me out as much as they can. Every time they give me a piece of feedback it is an absolute gem - they are so astute, articulate and knowledgeable about the art form that they know exactly what needs to change and exactly what needs to be done to make it happen.
In addition to being incredibly knowledgeable and helpful, these guys are a great hang and they have helped make my time with BD so far as enjoyable as it has been educational. The bass section is rounded our by Nicola Regonesi, a young Italian drummer who is just KILLING IT! We're all rooting for him to audition for the A Corps next year.
Today was a free day - the first we have had, and although we have only been on tour for just over a week, we definitely all needed the break! The rigours of a DCI rehearsal schedule coupled with the demands of international travel has taken it out of all of us - we definitely need the break!
From here, its off to the UK, then France, Italy and Switzerland. Can't wait!