Kimmel Center for the Performing Arts

DRUMLINE LIVE Kicks Off U.S. Tour of American Marching Band Experience in Philadelphia, Oct. 25-26

OCTOBER 3, 2011

"We've taken the excitement of an HBCU football game halftime show, increased the intensity by a thousand watts, and created a musical journey that will touch every emotion." —Don P. Roberts, Creator and Director


Drumline Live kicks off its second U.S. tour bringing the American marching band experience to the Merriam Theater, Tue.-Wed, October 25 –26, 2011. Fast with their sticks and just as fast with their feet, Drumline Live’s cast of 30+ musicians and dancers have trained in marching band programs across the southern United States presenting dynamic, athletic performances to the rousing sounds of the great brass tradition, as well as contemporary, hip-hop, Motown, and gospel music.


Drumline Live’s program begins by taking audiences on a journey to Africa, reinventing the ancient rhythms of the world’s first drummers; and continues with a performance of American Soul to Motown music by some of the greatest recorded artists of all time; a choreographed rendition of Michael Jackson’s “Beat It,” “Smooth Criminal,” and “Billie Jean;” hand-clapping, heart thumping southern gospel music; the sounds of the big band; the iconic halftime extravaganza of Historically Black College and University marching bands; and concludes with a one-on-one drum battle, and funky footwork to the best of the 80’s and 90’s music.

Tickets for Drumline Live are available at $20-$60, and can be purchased by calling 215-893-1999, online at, or at the Kimmel Center Box Office located on Broad and Spruce streets, Philadelphia, PA 19102 (open daily from 10am to 6pm, later on performance evenings).

Creator and director of Drumline Live, Don P. Roberts was the Executive Band Consultant for the nationally and internationally acclaimed hit movie, Drumline (Twentieth Century Fox), nominated in 2003 by the NAACP as Most Outstanding Motion Picture, and American Choreography Award for outstanding achievement in feature film.  Roberts was responsible for training the actors, writing precision drills, rehearsing the band, etc. Most recently, Mr. Roberts was appointed as the associate producer and executive band consultant for the ESPNU Television series, The Battle, which features some of America’s best Historically Black College and University (HBCU) Marching Bands.  The five series weekly show debuted in fall 2010.  Roberts also serves as president and musical director of Halftime Live, the official drum line company for the Atlanta Hawks from 2007 to present and the Atlanta Falcons in 2007.

As an educator, Mr. Roberts has served as the instrumental music coordinator of the DeKalb County School System since 1996. He served as chairman of the music department and director of bands (1990-1996) and dual role as DeKalb County instrumental music coordinator and co-director of bands (1998-2004) at Southwest DeKalb High School in Decatur, Georgia. Roberts received a Bachelor of Science Degree in Music Education from Florida Agricultural and Mechanical University (FAMU), considered to be one of the finest band programs in America; and a Master’s Degree in Music Education from Jacksonville State University. Presently, Roberts is pursuing a Doctorate Degree in Administration from Argosy University in Sarasota, Florida.  He is also a member of Phi Beta Mu International Bandmaster’s Fraternity.


Kimmel Center, Inc., a charitable, not-for-profit organization, owns, manages, supports and maintains The Kimmel Center for the Performing Arts, which includes Verizon Hall, Perelman Theater, Innovation Studio and the Merck Arts Education Center.  Kimmel Center, Inc. also manages the Academy of Music, owned by the Philadelphia Orchestra Association, and the University of the Arts Merriam Theater. Kimmel Center, Inc.’s mission is to operate a world class performing arts center that engages and serves a broad audience which includes providing arts in education, community outreach and a rich diversity of programming.  The 2011/2012 season is sponsored by Citi.  For additional information, visit

> index of news releases
> For more information, and to request high resolution images for press use, send us a message online.