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Wondering what technology a world champion marching band uses to be its very best? Here’s a list of apps that Calgary Stampede Showband staff members use regularly and would recommend for marching bands, drum corps, and other music ensembles. Know of any other great apps? Tell us about them in the comments!
1. Coach’s Eye
Marching Band Drill Viewer App 'DrillStudioViewer' - Duration. 5 Closers in Drum Corps That Give Chills Every Time - Duration. Marching Band Drill Design. Download Drill Creator for free. Drill Creator is a program that allows for the design of an entire show for marching band (Military, Drum, and Bugle Corps types). Marching band drill design by Victor Neves. But a band isn't a drum corps, it's a band. When you see a drum corps on TV, you need to realize that that group of kids has spent at least four hours a day, seven days a week for the past four or five months just on the marching show.
The Showband uses Coach’s Eye to help with its marching, percussion, dance, and color guard evaluations. Director Aaron Park loves its video analysis tools; staff use the camera on their mobile device to take video during rehearsal and add visual and audio feedback through the app, which can be shared with the student via email and Dropbox (another one of our favorite apps, see #6!).
2. Charms Office Assistant
Charms is an organization management tool that helps you keep track of student information. The Showband uses it to track students’ contact information, forms, uniform inventory, and attendance. You can even record attendance and track inventory by scanning barcodes with your mobile device. The Showband’s parent group, the Calgary Marching Show Band Association (CMSBA), also uses Charms to coordinate its fundraising efforts and both parents and students can log-in the app to see and update information.
Drill Marching Band Drum Corps Drill Design App For Mac Windows 10
3. Tempo Lite, Tempo, and Tempo Advance
Tempo is a metronome app that allows you to program an entire song, so it will automatically switch between different meters and tempos. Brass instructor Chris Bourne uses Tempo Advance and says it’s ideal for complex music, which changes meters more often. Chris also uses it to share the songs he creates with the Showband’s drum majors, so that they can connect it to the loudspeaker and practice conducting all of the different patterns.
iStroboSoft is a digital strobe tuner that is accurate and easy to use. The app’s strobe feature bars that move until your instrument is in tune, clearly showing your accuracy to different levels of precision. It even has a noise filter to remove background noise.
Notability is a PDF reader that allows you to upload music and drill in PDF format. Showband Assistant Director and percussion instructor Ryan Hancock uses Notability to make edits with pencil, text and highlighting tools before sharing updated documents with others.
Dropbox lets you upload and share files including photos, videos, and other documents. Best of all, you can access your files offline, which is essential when your rehearsal is at a remote location lacking internet access. The Showband’s music writers and visual designers also use Dropbox to collaborate while creating Showband productions.
7. Weather Network
It’s tough to plan for a 12 hour rehearsal day when Calgary’s weather can change on a dime. Will you need to bring a sweater? Sunscreen? An umbrella? The Weather Network’s app gives you reasonably accurate forecasts for the morning, afternoon, and evening.
The Showband uses SmartMusic to conduct its music evaluations for wind players. Students complete assignments at home by recording audio through the app on their iPad or on their computer. Our woodwind coordinator, April Waterbury, loves that she can assess students’ work and provide feedback through the app on her phone, so students see what they are doing well, as well as areas for improvement.
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9. Tiny Piano
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The Showband’s brass section sings a few songs in its warm-ups, but doesn’t usually have a large piano nearby, so Showband brass coordinator Jeff Waterbury uses Tiny Piano to teach pitch instead!
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10. Voice Memo
Showband staff use Apple’s built-in Voice Memo app to make recordings of rehearsals for later review, to record conversations and ideas during design meetings, and to prepare for rehearsals.