Monday, July 25, 2005

Where are the numbers...

Great practice, great warm up, great show, and a disappointing result. That about sums up the weekend, but here are some of my feelings coming out of this past weekend.

As a corps we gained some serious momentum and made some serious strides in our performance this weekend, even though it didn’t show up in the numbers. The performance was really very strong and very solid. We had some bumps out there, but at this point in the season everyone has them. This was probably the first real “Brigadiers” performance of the year. The other corps we have been masquerading as finally decided not to show up!

The numbers in my opinion did not match the performance. It seems to me as though the judging community has it set in their minds which style of shows are going to get rewarded. Our show is very “old school” in terms of the musical selections and design. It is less about the visual and more about the music. Pretty much everyone else out there is getting away from the music and getting more about the visual. It is becoming more and more like DCI every year. What hurts us and has hurt us in the past is our music scores being affected because we don’t move enough. I think you need to separate the two entities entirely. While musical performance can be affected by visual performance and vice versa, I still feel the two captions are being blended into one thing. Visual interpretation with musical accompaniment. That’s my opinion.

Now lets dispel some rumors. Some people watching our show don’t believe we really march above 140. Most of the show is actually marched well above 140. Our achievement and technique make it look like we are always moving effortlessly and therefore can be perceived as moving slow. So here we are achieving and being perceived as simplistic. That is not the case at all. If people watching in the stands can have this interpretation, then it is only logical that the judges can have a similar interpretation. What we do is not nearly as easy as it seems. Watch everyone closely and you can see just how difficult each program is. And from a musical standpoint, we are cramming about as many notes as humanly possible into 156-160+. Now try and cram all those notes in to 180. It’s not going to happen with any kind of clarity. The 180+ groups out there are playing whole notes, half notes and quarter notes. Nowhere near the degree of difficult syncopated rhythms and jazz rhythms we are playing. Someone please give credit to the musical velocity, and then go and find me someone who can do it better!

We will continue to improve and refine ourselves week in and week out. This corps will perform some really lights out shows in the coming weeks. We are gaining momentum, and we are improving our performance significantly from rep to rep and run through to run through. It is only a matter of time until we are a performing machine. Let’s just hope that it shows up in the numbers.

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