Michael Gaines Inducted into DCI Hall of Fame
Wednesday, August 10th, 2011 - 9:00 PM
By Christopher Lugo
The Cavaliers Drum & Bugle Corps would like to congratulate Michael Gaines for his recent induction into the Drum Corps International (DCI) Hall of Fame Class of 2011. "Michael has had a profound impact on The Cavaliers, the drum corps and winter guard activities, in addition to pageantry arts across the globe," says Corps Director Adolph DeGrauwe. "Michael's innovative visual designs continue to push The Cavaliers in new and exciting directions, and we're simply honored to have Michael as an integral part of the corps' design team."
Gaines marched in The Cavaliers as a member of the color guard from 1987 through 1990, serving as guard sergeant in his final year. He then continued on to teach The Cavaliers from 1991 to 1996, as well as being a member of the visual design team with Steve Brubaker and Greg Poklacki in 1992 and with Mitch Rogers in 1993. Gaines returned to the corps as drill designer and visual coordinator in 1998, and he has helped lead the corps to five DCI World Championships since 2000.
Gaines joins a long line of Drum Corps International Hall of Fame inductees associated with The Cavaliers Drum & Bugle Corps, including: Don Warren, Ralph Pace, Steve Brubaker, James Elvord, Paul Litteau, Adolph DeGrauwe, Larry McCormick, Sal Ferrera, Len Piekarski, Jeff Fiedler, Dick Brown, Alfred "Corky" Fabrizio, James Campbell and Raymond Baumgardt.
The Cavaliers would also like to congratulate fellow DCI Hall of Fame Class of 2011 inductees Ken Norman, Daniel Richardson and Todd Ryan!
The following is an excerpt from Drum Corps International's announcement:
Cavaliers visual designer
In a corps that earned its nickname the "Green Machine" based on the visual designs of such Hall of Fame greats as Len Piekarski and the late Steve Brubaker, Michael Gaines had some big shoes to fill when he first started writing the Cavaliers’ drill formations in his 20s.
Now, more than a decade on the job, he continues to create awe-inspiring visual effects on the football field that leave fans on the edges of their seats asking in amazement, “How’d they do that?
“He truly is the ‘Botticelli’ of present day drill design,” said Hall of Fame member James Elvord. “Single handedly, Michael has pushed all designers to explore the outer limits of sheer visual excitement. Michael’s work mesmerizes the audience with its brilliant clarity and technical difficulty. No one writing today creates effects on this grand a scale.”
Gaines was a member of The Cavaliers’ color guard section from 1987 to 1990. Joining its staff the following year, he had his first taste of the drum corps design process writing choreography for the color guard. Lending his hand to parts of the drill design in both 1992 and 1993, it wasn’t until The Cavaliers’ 50th anniversary season in 1998 that Gaines took on the full responsibility of the corps’ visual package.
Still crafting the Green Machine’s visual productions today, Gaines has made his mark while helping the corps achieve an unprecedented five World Championship titles in the 2000s.
A 2007 inductee to the Winter Guard International (WGI) Hall of Fame, outside of the drum corps arena, Gaines is an active designer, adjudicator and clinician for marching bands and color guards around the world.
His work in the marching arts both on and off the drum corps field continues to inspire designers of the past, present and future.
“We have seen many good designers and a handful of very good. Then there is the all-time list of drill designers,” said Hall of Fame visual designer Marc Sylvester. “I believe that it is the quality and consistency of Michael’s work that puts him in the league of the very best Drum Corps International has seen.”
Read more about the DCI Hall of Fame Class of 2011