Tuesday, May 24, 2011

Drummer's Call 2011-Colonial Williamsburg

The first event of the weekend was Friday evening, with a program at Kimball Theater called, "Successful Campaign." The program opened with a street concert featuring the alumni of The Colonial Williamsburg Fife and Drum Corps! They are still incredible and played one of our favorite ultra-speedy tunes, "Tail Toddle"!
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After they marched off, we found seats in the Kimball Theater for the main program, which showcased the Colonial Williamsburg Fife and Drum Corps and the Mountain Fifes and Drums from Lake Arrowhead, California. First, a CW fifer and a CW drummer came out, to give us a history lesson. After explaining the structure of their instruments, they explained the importance of communication on the battlefield, which was achieved through the fifer and drummer. Then they explained that there were specific tunes for specific purposes, like calling the men to dinner. Then we got to listen to lots of marches and various tunes from each of the corps units. First the Mountain Fife and Drums played...
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Then the Colonial Williamsburg Fife and Drum Corps played.
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Finally they ended the program by playing together!
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Afterwards we walked back to the Visitor Center, walking by the pond behind the Randolph House and near Lafayette Street. This is one of my favorite parts of Drummer's Call weekend, because even the Colonial Williamsburg frogs get into the spirit of things! Every month we visit and walk by this pond, but it is Drummer's Call Weekend that the frogs have their own concert of celebration! There are the bullfrogs with their slow cadenced bass, representing the drums. Then there are the other frogs with their quicker tempoed tenor chirps, representing the fifes! I could stay all night to listen to them!

Saturday around noon, anticipation was in the air!

The mantua makers...
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...the silversmith shop...
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...and even the King's Arm Tavern couldn't resist!

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What could it be? None other than the Grand March of the Colonial Williamsburg Fife and Drum Corps and all of their invited guests, from the Capitol to Market Square!
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The Old Guard from Washington DC...

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Alumni of the Colonial Williamsburg Fife and Drum Corps...

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Colonial Williamsburg Fife and Drum Corps...

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At Market Square, the Colonial Williamsburg Fife and Drum Corps played The Star Spangled Banner...
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After the cannon shots...
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...each of the Fife and Drum Corps units played!
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Look! There's the "Don't Give Up the Ship" flag we made for one of our history presentations, when my son represented Commodore Oliver Hazard Perry from the War of 1812 ! How cool to see it in action with other military flags!
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The Old Guard...

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Colonial Williamsburg Fife and Drum Corps and dancers...

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Usually on Saturday evenings for Drummer's Call, we attend the Tatoo. However this year, the event was expanded and my husband wanted us to participate, because it involved food! (You know the way to a man's heart is through his stomach.) We ordered the box lunches, which represented the Governor's Palace. We all picnicked on the Palace Green in the refreshing cool of the evening, after the torrid humidity of the day. Our dinner boxes were loaded with food. All I ever do is nibble, so my food lasted for many meals. Even the rest of my family couldn't eat everything. For once, we all had delicious left overs.
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Then we listened to a 20 minute program, "A Salute to the Nation," which included Patrick Henry and Gowan Pamphlet...

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...as well as others from history.
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Then there were fireworks!
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Ooh!
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Wow!
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My favorite!
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Grand Finale!
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Then all the Fife and Drum Corps lined up for the Tatoo, which also has military history! Crescets were lit, firesticks were ablaze, and the Fife and Drum Corps were fired up! So were all the guests! They led us from the Palace to the King's Arms Tavern on Duke of Gloucester Street!
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Once they arrived at the taverns, a huge jam session formed up. A leader would strike up a march and everyone joined in fifing and drumming in beat!
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Finally they disbanded and we walked back to the Visitor Center, via the pond with the bass bullfrog want-to-be drummers and the other frog tenor want-to-be fifers! I caught myself humming Fife and Drum Corps marches once we got back to the hotel. Drummer's Call is contagious!

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