A drum and lyre corps is a marching ensemble consisting of percussion instruments and a color guard. The Drum and Lyre corps originated in the Philippines, as it is easier to finance than brass bands or a drum and bugle corps. The instrumentation of a drum and lyre corps consists of a typical marching drumline (snare, tenor, and bass drums, and cymbals) with the addition of a lyre section. Lyre sections consist of bell lyres, or glockenspiels, as well as vibraphones and marimbas. During competitions, drum and lyre corps usually include a pit section which consists of the typical pit instruments used by drum and bugle corps.
The drum and lyre corps activity descended from other marching ensembles, including drum and bugle corps; Drum and Lyre corps are often parade ensembles. Aside from the regular drum and lyre corps competitions held during town fiestas, there is only one competitive circuit for Drum and Lyre corps which is the Drum and Lyre Corps Association of the Philippines Inc. (DLCAPI). It is a national association that has membership in various regions of the Philippines. Two current Drum Corps International drum corps, the Mandarins Drum and Bugle Corps and Blue Devils Drum and Bugle Corps, can each trace its history to a drum and lyre corps.
Drum and Lyre corps music arrangements are typically pitched in the key of C; this is likely another adopted quality of drum and bugle corps, as drum and bugle corps hornlines were traditionally pitched in G, and lyres in C, a compatible key. However, several drum and lyre corps are now experimenting with the key of Bb as the modern drum and bugle corps has incorporated modern playing techniques in brass as well as in percussion (modern drum rudiments).
Marching movement of drum and lyre corps is also patterned after drum and bugle corps. Feet are lifted to equal heights and drumlines make frequent use of a "crab walk" marching style to move sideways, marching forward would have the heels hit the ground first and marching backwards will have the player on "tip-toe". Both are intended for quick body transition during fancy marching drills and in order to avoid accidents during parades and fancy drills.