The Black Watch
The Black Watch Drum & Bugle Corps was formed in 1966 in Willingboro, NJ. The Drum Corps was started by a group of parents from the area, among them were Robert McGowan and Paul Bresnan. In 1970 John Wolfrom was asked to assume the position of Corps Director with Bresnan as his Assistant Director. Successful from the start, The Black Watch won its first Drum Corps International (DCI) Class A Championship in 1979 where they won the award for High Percussion as well. Additional to DCI, The Black Watch also participated in the Eastern States Circuit and the Garden State Circuit. When they were not competing, the corps participated in many parades local to New Jersey, and the Color Guard members participated in the indoor guard called the "Regimental Guard of The Black Watch" under the direction of Claudette Wolfrom (or "Lady" as she is famously known).
After the Drum Corps went inactive in 1984, Claudette continued the direction of the indoor Color Guard based out of Mt. Laurel, NJ where they competed locally as well as in Winter Guard International (WGI). In 1991 The Black Watch earned its first bronze medal in Independent A Class and was promoted to the Independent Open Class. In 1999 they were promoted into the Independent World Class, and have appeared in World Class Finals 12 times. Locally, they have been the Independent World Class Champion in the Tournament Indoor Association (TIA) Circuit for the past two decades.
While not competing, The Black Watch was a contestant on America's Got Talent in 2013 with their program "Dia De Los Muertos". Two years later in 2015, The Black Watch was selected alongside nine other Color Guards for David Byrne's "Contemporary Color" performance. This innovative concert experience was held at The Brooklyn Barclay's Center and Toronto's Air Canada Center to sold-out crowds in both areas and consisted of performances by world-renowned artists like David Byrne, Nelly Furtado, and St. Vincent coupled with live Color Guard shows to create stunning multi-media performances. The Black Watch performed their program "What We Leave Behind" with Artist Devonté Hynes and the film version of the event is available on Amazon, i-tunes, and contemporarycolor.com .
The New Jersey Drum Corps Hall of Fame chose to induct former Black Watch Color Guard Director Claudette Wolfrom for her 50 years of service and dedication to the marching arts in her home of southern New Jersey and around the country; her husband, John Wolfrom was inducted into the National Judges Association Hall of Fame and was recognized by TIA at their Chapter 1 and All-Chapter Championships. After the passing of Claudette in September of 2019 the Black Watch was placed into the care of her daughter, Joyce Wolfrom-Roos; her role as Director of the Black Watch legacy began with the dedication of their 2020 program to her mother, entitled "This Moment For You" which contained music selections and choreographic elements from all of Lady's favorite performances of The Black Watch.
The Black Watch is proud to toast many of its talented alumni and former staff members of the Drum Corps and Indoor Color Guard who have since gone on to have successful roles in various programs and artistic ventures around the world. We strive to continue to educate and support the talented members of the program now and for generations to come.