Drum Corps United Kingdom

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Drum Corps United Kingdom
DCUK logo.gif
Drum Corps United Kingdom Main Logo
Type Drum and Bugle Corps
Location United Kingdom
Founded 1980
No. of corps 16
Current champions The Company Performance Ensemble (2016 Open Class), Concord Allstars (2016 Junior Class)
Website DCUK.org.uk

Drum Corps United Kingdom (DCUK) is a governing organization for drum and bugle corps in the United Kingdom. DCUK operates the British drum corps circuit which holds drum and bugle corps competitions for corps across the country. It is part of the national charity - Marching & Performings Arts UK - http://www.mpauk.org.uk

Competitive Corps participate in competitions between the months of June to September, traditionally the British Drum Corps Championships takes place on the weekend before last in September. Competitions occur at sports arenas (i.e. athletic tracks, football or rugby grounds) and are judged by a panel of approved and training volunteer Judges on general effect, visual performance, and musical performance. Every year, each drum corps prepares a single new show, approximately 8–15 minutes in length, and carefully refines this throughout the entire summer year. This focus on a singular show takes advantage of the large amount of time needed to honing and refining a modern drum corps program, with a momentum that continues to build up to the last performance of the season, the Drum Corps United Kingdom Championships. DCUK finals has been held at the Select Security Stadium since 2013.

2017 Corps[edit]

Open Class

  • Beeches - Birmingham
  • Cadence - Surrey
  • Comets - Coseley
  • Dynamic Vibe - Polesworth
  • East Coast Elite - Cleethorpes
  • Kidsgrove Scouts - Kidsgrove
  • Liberty - Northampton
  • Phantom Knights - Atherstone
  • Revolution - Queensbury
  • The Company - Sheffield
  • The Pacemakers - Kent

Junior Class

  • Cadence Juniors - Surrey
  • Concord Allstars - Sheffield
  • Thurrock Marching Brass - Thurrock

Soundsport Class

  • Cadence Cadets - Surrey
  • Stafford Brigades - Stafford
  • The Company - Sheffield

Points System[edit]

Each corps is marked in 8 captions, Music Effect, Visual Effect, Field Music, Field Percussion, Ensemble Music, Colourguard, Field Visual and Ensemble Visual.

Each corps overall score places them somewhere in the European Music Games Ranking and helps them qualify for the Drum Corps Europe (DCE) finals the following year. In 2016, The DCE Finals hosted the best corps from the UK, Netherlands, Germany, Ireland, France, Belgium and Italy.

Musical composition and instruments[edit]

A typical DCUK show revolves around one central theme, for instance Frank Sinatra or Jazz, with songs fitting for the style.

Many Drum Corps performances begin with a Prologue which is usually linked into one of the main tunes that the corps is playing in the show.

The most typical Corps consists of:


Soprano Bugles (High Pitched)
Mellophone Bugles (Medium Pitched)

Baritone Bugles (Mid-Low pitch)

Contrabass Bugle (Bass Pitch)

Marching Percussion

Bass Drum

High Tension Snare Drum

Tenor Drums (quads)

Static Percussion

Arrangement of Static Orchestral Percussion instruments for instance:



Tubular bells

Visual Members

The visual section of a drum corps is referred to as the Colour Guard, these marching members are there purely for visual decoration. Using flags, wooden sabres and rifles as a norm, however on rare occasions a drum corps show can revolve around the colour guard performance with the use of props.

External links[edit]