The Bluecoats are proud to announce the addition of Donnie VanDoren and Aaron Beck to the corps’ instructional and design teams. VanDoren will serve as an advisor to the corps’ returning team of brass instructors, and after serving as a consultant in 2015, alum Aaron Beck officially joins the Bluecoats design team as Audio Systems Designer. A member of the Drum Corps International Hall of Fame, Donnie VanDoren has enjoyed a very long and successful career in the drum corps activity. Having led the brass program for the The Cadets, Star of Indiana, Troopers and Madison Scouts, Donnie’s expertise has led to many Jim Ott High Brass Awards and multiple Drum Corps International World Championships. He has also recently served as a brass advisor for the Blue Stars, Carolina Crown, and is currently the Program Coordinator, Staff Coordinator, and Brass Caption Supervisor for the Troopers. In addition, Donnie was instrumental in Star of Indiana’s transition from the field to the stage while serving as the Music Manager for Brass Theater and BLAST! He continues to serve as the Casting Director for Mason Entertainment Group while also maintaining his management consulting company, VanDoren Management Group.
Aaron Beck, a member of the Bluecoats cymbal line in 1995, started his audio career 25 years ago in Corydon, Indiana. After falling in love with all things audio while performing in his high school band and his church’s music ensemble, he studied Music Audio at Indiana University in Bloomington. After graduating, Aaron served as a professional audio engineer for several of Broadway’s largest tour companies including The Lion King, Beauty and the Beast, Mamma Mia, The Buddy Holly Story and Jolson the Musical. He is currently Head of Audio for Cirque du Soleil’s Michael Jackson One in Las Vegas, and also played an instrumental role in the development of Cirque du Soleil’s The Beatles Love and Viva Elvis.
VanDoren and Beck join an incredible team of returning designers and instructors.
Program Coordinator Dean Westman and Artistic Director/ Visual Designer Jon Vanderkolff will continue to lead the Bluecoats Design Team in 2016. Composers Doug Thrower, Tom Rarick and Vince Oliver will return as Brass Designer, Percussion Designer and Electronics Designer (respectively). Jim Moore continues as Guard Designer, Choreographer and Guard Caption Supervisor, and Greg Lagola returns as Costume Designer and contributing member of the design team.
Caption Supervisor Dave Mackinnon and Caption Head Derek Gipson will again lead the Bluecoats Brass program. Ryan Kilgore will continue as Music Ensemble Coordinator, Roger Carter returns as Percussion Caption Head and Brad Palmer returns as Front Ensemble Coordinator. In addition to Jim Moore, the Bluecoats Guard program will again be led by Caption Head Shavon Garcia. Mike Fanning returns for his third season as the corps’ Visual Caption Head.