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Music

Drums Along the Rockies coming back to Denver

Marching music competition always draws enthusiastic crowd

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Lily Walker used one word to describe Drums Along the Rockies: “spectacular.” Last year, 40,000 people swarmed Sports Authority Field at Mile High for the annual marching music competition.

“It’s honestly the craziest thing you could experience,” said Walker, a 19-year-old from Highlands Ranch who is on the Blue Knights Drum and Bugle Corps, one of 10 groups that will perform in this year’s spectacle.

The world’s top drum corps will entertain the crowd and battle for top honors from 6:30-10:30 p.m. on July 15 at the downtown Denver stadium, 1701 Bryant St. Tickets range from $20-50 and can be purchased at ascendperformingarts.org/events/datr/.

On tour since June 18, Denver’s Blue Knights, comprised of young marching musicians from across the globe, have played at some of the country’s top facilities including Stanford Stadium and Rose Bowl Stadium, both in California.

But, Blue Knights executive director Mark Arnold said, the upcoming competition at Sports Authority Field tops them all.

“The crowd who attends Drums Along the Rockies is always one of the most enthusiastic, engaged and electric crowds we perform for all year,” said Arnold.

Arnold foresees the ultimate showdown among three corps: The contemporary, avant-garde-style Blue Knights, the jazzy Blue Devils, of Concord, California, and the big band-style Blue Coats, of Canton, Ohio.

“What’s really exciting is the corps coming all have unique musical and programming styles,” Arnold said. “These drum corps are among the very best in the world.”

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