It used to be that if you had special needs, certain sports and activities were off-limits. Thankfully, those days are coming to an end.
This drum corps from Old Bethpage, New York, is proving that. They are making history as the first drum band with special needs to ever compete in the Drum Corps Associates World Championships.
The Family Residences and Essential Enterprises Drum & Bugle Corps is made up entirely of people with special needs. It was founded in 2010 by Brian Calhoun, a senior music specialist at FREE Music & Performing Arts Adult Day Program and Respite Program, who wanted to “provide new opportunities to people of all abilities.”
The entire Corps has more than 70 members whose ages range from 20 to over 50. They receive artistic instruction, as well as opportunities to travel and learn with an inclusive community. And clearly, their hard work is paying off.
The DCA is the nation’s “oldest continuously operating drum corps circuit.” Its prestigious world championship event is held in Williamsport, Pennsylvania and brings in extremely talented competitors from around the U.S.
The FREE Players Drum Corps will primarily compete as a group, but a few players have also been selected to participate in solo competitions. They frequently perform in parades and other large events, and they’re thrilled to take the stage with the nation’s best and brightest during the 2019 DCA Championships.
The event takes place over Labor Day weekend and promises these players a life-changing experience. FREE started a fundraiser to help their members get to Williamsport and have already surpassed their goal, so we know they’ll be ready to go when showtime comes!
What a fantastic opportunity for this talented group! Music truly is for everyone, and it’s wonderful to see their hard work and dedication being rewarded.
Just being invited to the DCA Championships is making history. Can you imagine if they broke even more ground by winning? We’re sending the FREE players all of our good vibes!
Watch the video below to see the band in action, and don’t forget to share.
Please Like, Share, Follow and Invite your friends to our page! We are the FREE Players Drum Corps, the World's 1st Differently-Abled (Special Needs) "Corps Style" Marching Band. We hope to inspire others by showing that anything is possible with heart, hard work and the desire to push oneself beyond any previously concevied limitations!We are 70 members strong, divided between our Drumline, Front Ensemble (Pit), Color Guard, Brass, as well as a Drum Major. Please visist www.gofundme.com/freedrumcorps to see how you can help us share our passion for music, dance, the performing and marching arts with the world! You can help us make history, break down boundaries and show that people with disabilities, can make the impossible, POSSIBLE!!Don't forgot to follow us on Instagram and Twitter @FREEDrumCorps
Posted by Free Players Drum & Bugle Corps on Saturday, July 8, 2017
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