Middelburg The Netherlands

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Juliana is a junior marching and maneuvering drum corps. The group traces its roots to 1933 as a drum and pipe corps in Middelburg, Netherlands. Starting with 15 members, it grew to a total of 80 musicians over the following six years. During the years of enemy occupation in the second world war, membership fell to only one or two dozen people, primarily in the Pipers, and although they could not perform, the group continued to meet and rehearse.

When Juliana was reactivated in 1945, membership rose quickly to about 50 members, and the corps could once again parade in public. In 1958 there were 95 members, and membership peaked in 1962 at 130 members.

In that year, the standard pipe and drum instrumentation was supplemented by 11 hunting horns, a gift from the townspeople of Middelburg. The original pipe-flutes were replaced with des-flutes, making it possible for brass and pipe instruments to play together. Due to the decrease in the number of pipers and the increase in the number of brass players, it was decided that the "pipe corps" part of the name was outdated. The name was changed to "Drum Major & Trumpet Corps Juliana.”

When by 1968 the membership had again fallen to 35 members, a platoon of majorettes was added to enhance the group‘s appeal. For years the majorettes formed a direct part of the corps, but in 1979 Juliana went on an American tour and the ladies began to carry a show-flag in the American style. From that time on they were no longer called majorettes, but were referred to as the silk section. The silks have become an ever more important part of the show, as they accentuate the mood and rhythm of the music with their flags.

In 1976 the corps was equipped with fully chromatic three-valve instruments, primarily trombones, altos, and sousaphones. The corps had evolved from a trumpet corps with straight trumpets and hunting horns into a real show-fanfare that could perform any type of music. From this time on, it became “Showband Juliana Middelburg," the addition of the place-name necessitated by the fact that there were about 40 music corps in Holland called Showband Juliana! The corps became well known both at home and abroad for its American style of show and music. In spite of a simple musical start in 1976, the standard rapidly improved and in 1978 "Juliana Middelburg" was promoted to the premier division.

In May 1979, the corps took part in a concourse for American-oriented corps with other groups from Holland and England. The two largest Dutch corps, the Beatrixband from Hilversum and Jubal from the town of Dordrecht, also took part in exhibition. Juliana was crowned the number one Dutch corps with American-style show and repertoire.

More and more members were becoming enthusiastic about this American style. A number of the corps’ instructors had traveled to America to see how things were done there. They came back full of ideas, one of which was the possibility of switching from an American-style band to a drum and bugle corps. This proposed radical shift caused a lot of commotion in the corps; a number of members were not in favor of the switch, but the majority eventually won out. In 1983, Showband Juliana Middelburg was split up, and the Juliana Corps Middelburg was created. Those members who preferred not to follow the drum corps style formed the Juliana's Blaasorkest Corps, specializing in Egelander music. Later a third group, known as Humoreske, was formed from this corps; they played a wide variety of musical styles.

The other two corps became Juliana's Drum & Bugle Corps and Junior Drum Corps Johan Friso, both of which have had considerable success at home and abroad in the past few years. Johan Friso has been champion in the Cadet Class of the Drum Corps Holland competition 12 times. Juliana Drum & Bugle Corps has won a gold medal four times in a row at the World Music Concours in Kerkrade, Netherlands, and was A-Class champion in 1998 in both DCH Holland and DCUK in the United Kingdom. At the 2002 KNFM finals Juliana finished second in the Open Class competition.


Members (5)

Member Name Section Years Involved
de Werk, Peter Jan Baritone 1992 to 1994
de Werk, Peter Jan Mellophone 1995 to 1997
Stroet, Rob Bassline/Corpsdirector 1998
Verstelle, Martijn Trumpet 2007 to 2008
Verstelle, Martijn Mellophone 2009 to 2012
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