Drill Team represents Norwich and U.S. in international competition

This past summer, members of the Norwich University Regimental Drill Team were invited to perform in Switzerland, according to the leader of the regimental band, Lt. Col. Todd Edwards.

“We were invited by the show’s organizer to take the trip to Switzerland,” said Edwards. The 8 day trip from July 7-14 to St. Gallen, Switzerland, which is about an hour from the German border, consisted of 17 members of the drill team including three alumni.
Not only was the drill team far away from home, but they also were the only representatives from the US at the competition. “There were probably 300 other participants at the exhibition,” Edwards said.
The NU Drill Team was among good company according to some members of the team.
“There were all sorts of different performers there, like the Royal Marines had their band there as well,” said Shane Parcels, 19, a sophomore communications major from Kansas City, Kan. “Scottish River Dancers, Bulgarian dancers, and a Malta Band were there too,” Parcels said.
The team stayed busy during their time in St. Gallen between practices every afternoon and shows every night according to Edwards.
The time in Switzerland wasn’t all business for the drill team. “ We also explored pubs and bars and things like that to see what the local culture was like,” said Ryan Lagasse, 19, a sophomore criminal justice major from Woonsocket, R.I. “Communicating was one of the most difficult parts of the trip,” said Parcels. “It can be really hard to communicate if you don’t know anything except English in a foreign country.”
The drill team is used to being in competitions instead of an exhibition like the one in St. Gallen, stated Parcels. “For it being the first performance of the kind that we’ve ever done I think it went well, but it definitely could have gone better.”
The drill team learned much from their trip to a foreign country, even though their time was short. According to Lagasse, “It was definitely a good way for us to get some exposure to other countries and a good experience as a whole.”

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