Alumni News

20 Questions: Chris White (1991-92)

by admin on March 29, 2014 Comments Off on 20 Questions: Chris White (1991-92)


Current Occupation: Civil Engineer in Baton Rouge, LA

Contact Information: cwhite@wynnwhite.com

Years in Phantom Regiment and Section: 1991 and 1992, drumline, 2nd bass

1. What made you want to march in Regiment?

The costumes, the black drums, and so many members in my college band (Northwestern State University in Natchitoches, LA) that marched Regiment. Most of our drumline exercises were from PR, so it just seemed the way to go.

2. What is your favorite memory of your time in Regiment?
First tour in 1991. It was my first tour during my first year, and we went to the East coast. We went to D.C., Philadelphia, Rhode Island, Gettysburg, and a bunch of other places. I d never been there before. I was a history major, and it couldn t have been a better area for us to visit. And the fans hadn t seen Regiment that much, so they were fired up, which really excited us.

3. If you could go back and change one thing about your time in the corps what would it be?
Somehow change that 8th place finish in 1992. Getting dropped 2 spots on finals night when I aged out was like getting punched in the gut.

4. What is your all time favorite piece of music that Regiment has played?
Although I was in the drumline, my favorites were Ave Maria and Amazing Grace. The hornline was amazing in both.

5. Who do you remember most from your marching days?
My fellow bass drummers. Other parts of the corps have their own chemistry, but I think the bass section is a little different since we re so dependent on each other while playing and marching. We had a lot of fun, and when we disagreed, it could get intense. We were pretty tight both my years.

6. Any interesting or funny bus stories?
Not really interesting, but I saw a lot of neat things for the first time through the windows of Bus 3, like the New York City skyline, Washington D.C, Arlington National Cemetery, and a lot of other places.

7. Did you have temporary housing in Rockford while you marched, and if so, do you still have contact with them?
In 1991 I lived with the Lindquist family, and with Pat Fiordelisi in 1992. I ‘m still in contact with them.

8. Any favorite stories about Rockford?
Parties at Al Dunn ‘s house, and I ‘ll leave it at that.

9. What skills/experiences from your time in Regiment have you utilized in your current job or life today?
Hard work and perseverance. Break tasks down into small, manageable parts, then add on. Next thing you know, you ‘ve got it down.

10. Did you audition and if so, what was your audition like?   
There were quite a few people who showed up in late 1990 to audition. So it wasn’t handed to any of us. The whole time I was worried I wasn’t getting enough time to play and beat out the others. To add to this, I started out on 3rd bass, where I was pretty comfortable. But then, because I ‘m so short, they moved me up the 2nd, which was great because I got more notes and was harder to play. The auditions went on until March, when they finally set the bass drum line.

11. What advice would you give to the kids marching today?
Take time, look around, and soak in the experience. Don ‘t complain about the hard work – that ‘s why you ‘re there. Enjoy your fellow corps members. One day you ll be scattered all over the place, and you’ re really going to miss your days (and nights!) rehearsing and performing, and most importantly, each other.

12. Any memorable rehearsal stories?
The time we rehearsed at Turpin Stadium in Natchitoches, LA from 12 am – 4 am after having done a show. It was August, and of course it gets pretty hot in Louisiana. The staff wanted to get in some work, and not many of us were happy. But I remember being somewhat ok with it because that show was closest to home for me, and the only real chance I had to see friends from back in the real world. And I ‘d gone to school there, so I ‘d spent my fair share of time on that field. Home is home, no matter what time of day.

13. Is there one show/performance that sticks out in your memory?
Easily the 1991 show in Natchitoches, LA. It was a home show for me since I ‘d gone to school there, as had a lot of other members that year. I think there were 9 of us. My Mom and Dad had crawfish etouffee for the corps. That was the best crawfish etouffee I ‘d eaten up until then. We won the show, then headed off to Dallas for finals. We beat the Cavies that night, who ‘d eventually come in 2nd. Kind of makes you think we could ‘ve pulled off 2nd instead of 3rd, but the rain all week kept us from cleaning up some things we needed to work on.

14. What instructor or member intimidated you the most?
Jeff Prosperie or Marty Hurley. Great people, and great teachers. But man they could spot when you didn’ t play well, and you didn’t want a stern lecture from them. But when you played well and they recognized you for it, it was special.

15. What staff/support person made the biggest impression on you?
The folks who worked in the food truck. And why? The food truck was the bass drummers job, so I spent the most time with them. They were up before everyone else, and were still up when everyone was shutting down. We were the last to pack up and leave places. I know everyone works hard, and were always working in their own way, but they stood out to me, I guess mainly because I saw it firsthand every day when we put stuff out and packed up.

16. What nicknames do you remember?
Not too many that are suitable for publication. We used to call Marty Hurley Erasmus because we knew his middle initial was E , but no one knew his middle name. He wouldn t tell us, but on the last day of the 1992 season he told us. Mine was Flash, because I had a Flash superhero T-shirt I wore one day, and the guys started calling me that, and the name stuck.

17. Did you have trouble adjusting back to civilian life after the season ended?
Yes! It was hard getting used to sleeping in a bed!

18. What would you like to see the Regiment do to increase alumni involvement?
I actually think they do a pretty good job already. I don ‘t get around much because I live so far away and don ‘t get a chance to see many shows because of work. But we ‘re in contact. Maybe more use of social media.

19. Of your years in Regiment, what year was your favorite?
1991, no doubt.

20. What was your favorite Regiment tradition?
initiation

admin20 Questions: Chris White (1991-92)