Drum Major

Hi there. This question was asked back in 2018 so I dont know if anything has changed but right now I’m the leader of my squadrons marching band. (3 snare drummers including me and a bass drummer) I’ve been to Nationals and Regional’s and got my gold drummers badge. I want to become a Drum Major and I’ve been told all I need to be is the leader of a band and it doesn’t matter if I have had any training. I know the basics of DM drill but if I was to tested on it then I would fail since I’ve only ever watched it and never had proper training. I feel like you would need training from somewhere to become a DM but I might be wrong. Also would I need to have my MOI to assess cadets for their blue drummers badge or can I do it with just a gold badge?

Your wing warrant officer should be the main point of contact for the drill aspects of Drum Majoring, though if there are other experiences DMs in your wing then they can be of use.

Similarly, the wing bandmaster can advise on assessing for musicians badges but ACTO 123 uses the wording: “In this context, the term competent person refers to a member of volunteer staff with the appropriate qualifications and/or experience to conduct an assessment.” which suggests to me that cadets aren’t useful to assessing.

I was under the impression it had to be signed off by someone with a musical qual or musical teaching qual…probably wrong though

There is no formal process for DM Drill instruction as of yet. The adherance to ACP 633 is what is useful. After speaking to the Corps WO for Band Drill and Ceremonial, I am now aware that Drum Majors who have a particular style of drill (with regards to Drum Majoring) are permitted to keep that style because their band is used to it.

The Drum Major is the leader with regards to Drill, Dress and Discipline. You cannot assess for badges, your Wing MusO should (Or Sqn Bandmaster if you have one). Depending on people in your Wing or Region (Staff or Cadets) you may be able to be taught by someone.

I am an instructor for aspiring Drum Majors at my particular Wing and Region. My advice to someone who cannot be helped by an external instructor would be -

Read ACP633 and try to gain a knowledge of Band Drill as a whole. Revise the mace movements and permitted band movements. Go off the pictures as the images and text don’t correlate in places.

If you need any further help, message me and I can give you some more info.