- April 04, 2023 04:16
By Mark Vincent A. Durano
Far Eastern University (FEU) Drumline of FEU Drum and Bugle Corps (DBC) proudly flourished Tamaraw cultural artistry in a special radio appearance at ‘Art 2 Art with Lisa Macuja Elizalde' aired on DZRH News Television last January 7.
In an online interview with FEU Advocate, FEU DBC President John Raphael Ramirez looked back at the Morayta-based Drumline’s experience on the program.
“Initially, exciting syempre kasi hindi namin in-expect na ma-interview sa ganu’ng platform (Initially, exciting of course since we did not expect to be interviewed in such platform),” he said.
Ramirez shared that Art 2 Art helped in exposing the FEU community to performing arts under the FEU Center for the Arts (FCA) besides the University’s athletic reputation.
“Marami pang talents ang kayang i-produce ng FEU … Masasabi mong proud na Tamaraw ka (FEU can produce many more talents … You can say that you are a proud Tamaraw),” he added.
Additionally, Ramirez wanted the organization to be recognized as a safe space for its members.
FEU DBC Artistic Director Kevin Castelo and Drumline Section Leader Jhensen Salvador joined Ramirez as guests for the episode, characterizing the exclusive beats of the cultural group.
Castelo cited the experience and unparalleled training as the members’ perks amid joining the organization.
“Pinag-iisapan din po naming mabuti talaga ‘yung program, kung pa’no sila [members] matututo, and pa’no sila magiging magaling na student artist, (We really think about the program well, how they will learn, and how they will be a great student artist),” he said.
The Artistic Director shared that new members are first trained with key fundamentals before being assigned to sections or instruments.
“Wala namang experience talaga na required kasi ituturo naman po namin talaga (No experience is really required because we will really teach it),” he continued.
Furthermore, the green-and-gold marching band trains thrice a week from 9 to 11 PM ranging from note reading classroom sessions to instrument playing on-ground.
Salvador emphasized prioritizing academic load, especially since they have to maintain their scholarship.
“Pinaka-kailangan po is ‘yung time management and ‘yung pagkakaroon po ng balance between academics and du’n sa cultural group po namin (The most important is time management and having a balance between academics and our cultural group),” he claimed.
Moreover, all 16 Tam-drummers performed their winning piece ‘Two-Face’ from Musiko 2023: The Grandest Marching Arts Competition in the Philippines.
The student artists expressed their joy upon winning the title during the Bakood Festival last September 29, 2023, weighing their efforts as rewarding.
“Sobrang saya na ‘di ko sya ma-describe … Parang sasabog ka na eh (It is so happy that I cannot describe … like you are about explode),” Salvador mentioned.
While preparing for the competition that started last November 2022, Ramirez unveiled that they encountered rollercoaster-like progressions.
“Andu’n po ‘yung mga parang pagsubok. Kasi dahil din do’n mas nagiging stronger ‘yung bond, ‘yung samahan (There are the challenges. Because of those, the bond, the camaraderie, becomes stronger),” the President noted.
In collaboration with other bands, FEU DBC is set to conduct this year’s Marching Band Festival on January 31.
FEU DBC is the official marching band unit of FEU composed of FEU Drumline, Brassline, and Guardline, established in 1937 by the University founder Dr. Nicanor Reyes.
(Photo Courtesy of Art 2 Art with Lisa Macuja Elizalde)