HomeHistoryDrum Corps in the blood of Ballantynes

Drum Corps in the blood of Ballantynes

Trevor Ballantyne with his sons, Luke, Matthew and Christopher at the Toowoomba Carnival of Flowers 2016

The Bundaberg Drum Corps celebrated its 65th Anniversary this weekend with a march down Bourbong Street and performance in Buss Park.

Over the years more than 400 people have participated in the band, something that would never have happened without founder Kevin Ballantyne.

Current Band Master, Trevor Ballantyne, said his dad got the idea to start a drum band in 1955 and it quickly became a family tradition.

“It’s a dynasty I suppose, some people are born into generational farming, we are born into drumming,” Trevor said.

“You have to play whether you like it or not, it’s part of our DNA.

“Dad passed away 10 years ago and was still active up to about a year before that.

“He had three sons and they all went through the band. My brother was Band Master early on, before he moved to Brisbane.

Founder Kevin Ballantyne teaching Bradley Zeimer and Glen Dalton.

“We’ve then all had kids go through the band, and I had three sons go through. It’s very much multi-generational for the Ballantynes.”

Trevor has now been in the band over 50 years and said sharing the experience with others is what keeps him coming back.

“We’ve played everywhere from Cairns to Melbourne, at the Sydney Opera House, and probably every provincial city on the eastern seaboard of Australia.”

The Bundaberg Drum Corps is celebrating 65 years this weekend.

The Drum Corps was recently successful in securing funding for a documentary about their history through a Bundaberg Regional Council Regional Arts Development Fund grant.

“It’s pretty amazing to see 65 years of the Drum Corp cut down to 20 minutes, all the old memories and people.”

Trevor said one of the highlights of the documentary is footage of Expo 88, held in Southbank.

“It was really a pinnacle of the band. You’re on the world stage, you can’t get much bigger than that, to be performing for people all over the world.”

Once finalised the documentary will be available to view online.

Related news: Drum Corps return to Brisbane Anzac Day Parade

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