What does a typical contest day look like?
For all contests, you should count on it being an all-day event. A day of fun and awesome performances by hard-working students, you mean?! ABSOLUTELY!!!!
Itineraries will be sent out in the newsletter for each week’s competition. Please be aware that we do not receive the performance schedule until 1-2 weeks before each of our respective contests. We will release our own itineraries as soon as we have the official contest schedules.
Typically, students will arrive at HSE for a regular rehearsal, followed by about 2 hours of loading equipment/eating/resting. Travel time is built into the schedule to allow us to arrive at the contest site about 60-90 minutes before we go into warm-up. Once we arrive, we unload and dress into full uniform. Many times during the early part of the season (September), we will have a performance time in the evening, possibly even as late as 9:00pm or later. (which we love because we get to be under the stadium lights!) Later in the season (October), we might have varied performance times depending on the contest schedule.
RCG participates in 3 basic types of Marching Band Contests throughout the season:
Invitationals – shows that local schools host and while they are adjudicated, there is no qualification process.
ISSMA (Indiana State School Music Association) – This is our State contest circuit, which means that in order to advance from weekend to weekend, you must qualify. At ISSMA Regionals, we have to score in the top 10 bands at our site to qualify for ISSMA Semi-State. At Semi-State, which is the top 20 bands in our class in the state, you have to score in the top 10 bands to advance to ISSMA State Finals.
BOA (Bands of America) – These are national competitions that are held at sites around the country. We are attending two BOA events this year – one in Oxford, Ohio on September 22nd and one here at Lucas Oil on October 19th and October 20th. BOA events are Prelims/Finals events, which means the possibility exists that if we advance to Finals, we would actually have TWO performances at these contests, one in the morning/afternoon, and then one again in the evening as a part of Finals. It is a HUGE deal that our RCG has started to compete in this national circuit!!!