Drum Corps Associates (DCA) and Drum Corps International (DCI) will partner for the 2024 and 2025 competitive seasons to produce, promote and expand the “DCI All-Age Class.”
Under the agreement, DCA corps will perform under their own competitive rules while adhering to the operating policies of DCI; with the goal of creating mutual success through the wide-reaching support and promotion of the unique opportunities provided through participation in All-Age drum corps and attendance at their events .
Additional details of the newly established partnership will be made available later this summer.
What this means
For the past several years, the boards of directors of Drum Corps Associates (DCA) and Drum Corps International (DCI) have been collaborating on several fronts to sustain and grow the drum corps activity.
This past winter, at the request of DCA, a proposal was presented by DCI CEO Dan Acheson and DCA president John Carr to DCA corps directors, outlining the potential framework of an "All-Age Class" plan. The proposal was reviewed and discussed at length, and was ultimately approved by the DCA corps directors for implementation in 2024.
Frequently Asked Questions
What was contained in the proposal?
The proposal recommended the integration of DCA into DCI as an "All-Age Class," maintaining existing DCA rules, judging criteria, and weekend-only format.
Why was this proposal brought forward?
Over the past decade, DCA has observed a considerable decline in the number of participating corps and a significant decline in championship ticket sales. DCA show sponsors have also been struggling to fill shows with a sufficient number of competing units to ensure the viability of the event.
During the same time frame, DCI Open Class corps have sometimes struggled for performance opportunities. With both circuits sharing very similar missions, this move is intended to leverage efficiencies to ensure greater success for all.
How does this integration benefit the DCA circuit and DCA member corps?
The partnership with DCI provides for greater exposure of DCA corps to new audiences, and provides access to key DCI resources including event management expertise, participant health, wellness and safety programs, potential partnerships and an expanded marketing reach.
What is DCI All-Age Class?
The DCI All-Age Class will consist of current DCA member corps, coordinated by existing DCA president John Carr. The current DCA competitive rules will continue to apply to all DCI All-Age corps. DCI policies relating to operational areas such as participant safety, SafeSport® training, music licensing and other key areas will apply.
Will the rules for DCA/DCI All-Age corps change?
Current DCA rules will apply, and are subject to existing rule change procedures.
Will the performance schedule change?
DCI All-Age corps will perform mostly on weekends as DCA has in the past. Championships will be moved from Labor Day weekend to the second weekend in August in line with the DCI World Championships.
Where will DCI All-Age Championships be held?
DCI All-Age Championship finals will be held in Lucas Oil Stadium on Saturday morning and afternoon in Indianapolis, prior to the start of the DCI World Championship Finals event.
How will this impact DCA corps financially?
For most DCA corps, this change will represent an increase in costs due to expenses relating to travel and housing for the World Championships in Indianapolis.
Will I be able to see DCI World Class, Open Class, and All-Age Class corps in the same show?
As future schedules are created, the goal is to fully leverage opportunities to showcase a diverse lineup of corps across classes to the greatest degree and as often as possible within the existing parameters of the tour.