Milford Graduate Tours with Drum Corps

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3By Terry Rogers

Seth Hastings, who graduated from Milford High School in 2013, recently began touring with the Carolina Crown, a World Class competitive drum corps that competes throughout the country. In one week, during what was called Tour of Champions, the Milford graduate visited five states and seven cities, playing bass with four other percussionists.

“I get to play the drums every day and have actually enjoyed waking up in a different state every other day,” Seth said. “I have made friends that will last a lifetime.” Two of the other four percussionists are from Florida while the other two are from Massachusetts and Illinois.

Seth began playing drums in fifth grade, following in the footsteps of his older brothers, Brandon and Jordan. In addition to the Milford Marching Bucs, Seth played on the worship team for his church. After enrolling in the University of Delaware, Seth joined the Marching Blue Hens while also marching in the Winter Guard International and the Imperial Dynasty Cadets Winter Percussion.

“I attended camp and went through an audition process for the Carolina Crown in December,” Seth said. “After another camp in January, I was accepted into the corps, offered a spot and signed a contract. While I was in school, I practiced with them once each month while I was also finishing the winter indoor season with Cadets Winter Percussion out of Allentown, Pennsylvania. In May, I moved to South Carolina where we lived and practiced daily at Gardner-Webb University in Boiling Springs, North Carolina. We began our tour on June 17 at Lucas Oil Stadium in Indianapolis.”

The corps rehearses daily to prepare for the 29 performances and two parades they are scheduled for over the summer. Their last performance is on August 8 at Lucas Oil Stadium where they will participate in the Drum Corps International Finals. Seth says he will fly home to Delaware on August 9 after having traveled more than 15,000 miles during the summer months.

Seth says that his biggest influence was his brother, Jordan, who introduced him to drum corps when he was in middle school. He says that his dream has always been to march in a World Class corps. In the fall, he will return to the University of Delaware where music and percussion will remain a part of his life.

“The hardest part of this has been being exhausted all the time and rehearsing on turf fields when it is over 100 degrees and humid,” Seth said. “When I return home in August, I will get to sleep in a real bed for the first time since June 14.” Seth said that their sleeping arrangements during the tour consist of either the tour bus, which he said can be very difficult, or on a roll out mattress pad and sleeping bag in a high school where they are performing.

Seth said that the best advice he can give to current Milford students is to work hard and go for their dreams. He said that all of the hours of practice and hard work have been worth it as he has achieved a goal he set for himself when he was in middle school.