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 Post subject: August 11-12, 2007-- Madison, WI Resume Hut review (LONG)
PostPosted: Sun Aug 13, 2006 4:20 pm 
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RH's Fair and Balanced (not) Look at 2006's Top 17 of 2006

I was sitting low in the lower deck at midfield and could hear and see details quite well but couldn't see the overall drill design or the visual ensemble (unless it was really off) very well. Your mileage may vary, particularly elsewhere in the stadium or on high cam.

Some general comments. After a hot and rainy summer, the weather was blessedly close to ideal. The audience was the best behaved finals crowd (when it can be touch-and-go, especially in the squeezed confines of Camp Randall) that I can remember, at least within my earshot.

I wasn't aware of any changes in show design in the final week.

Some final placements (especially BK vs. Crown) were controversial with the Camp Randall crowd, but controversy was inevitable. For once, the outcome proved to be very much in doubt, and it was the most hotly contested DCI finals at least since 1980, if not ever. Things went so unexpectedly as twelfth place up through fourth were announced, that when Brant Crocker got to third and second, you could tell, nobody knew what was coming next.

Everybody in top twelve except Spirit remained in a cluster with one or more other corps within a point of them, trading captions aggressively with lots of ordinal variation within and across shows. So when people say, “No way did Blue Knights beat Crown”... well, when two corps are within a point of each other, the outcome depends who the judges were and where their eyes and ears were focused. For fans in the stands or at home to say “no way” is really not fair. We want suspense? Then we have to live with unpredictable and controversial results. The judges did their jobs and called it as they saw and heard it, no matter what went down the night before or in July. So though I didn't personally agree with about half the placements :shock: (though no more than one place away), I give a big shoutout to the DCI judges for a job well done this week.


Mandarins “Rhythm Nation”

Highlights:
New unis are a nice look (though I missed the Samurai warrior outfit on the DM, even if it was a cultural misfit for the Mandarins).
War drum start, leading with their strength.
Yellow PVC tubes used by guard add sound and visuals.
Transition out of percussion feature to ballad.
Ring flags in Metheny closer.
Guard energy and dance.

Lowlights:
Slow to bring hornline into show (even into drill).
Major music ensemble tear in contras in Metheny closer.
Guard drops.

Capital Regiment “Life Rhythms: Work Rest and Play”

I especially liked...
The general concept.
Their Eric Whitacre and Philip Glass musical book. I'd be happier with more Eric Whitacre and Philip Glass and less Pat Metheny in DCI.
Guard unis.
Transition to Rest; for example, the typist slowing down-- nice use of sound effect, by the way
Cross-field Frisbee toss in Play section.
Best amplified vocals of the year-- actually added to the show because it was left as a quiet and fun mood-setter to the background-- didn't try to override or compete with percussion
Amplified tubes original, upbeat percussive effect.
Their highly skilled sound board technician, blending amplified sound to horns and field drums to great effect.

I wasn't particularly keen on...
The DM reading a newspaper and taking too long to get underway before start of show. I get the concept connection of it and the checking of wristwatch to the Work opener, but more than setting the stage, I thought it unintentionally communicated a mildly rude disdain for the audience.
Some music ensemble issues in Work
Horns had trouble with contrasts and smooth changes in dynamics in Work and Rest
Air drumming by brass players during drum feature in Play-- distracting, ineffective visual (because it looked like lousy drumming).


Blue Stars “The Gift of Freedom”
Freedom:
Welcome back to Division I with a strong showing here in 2006.
The "Freedom to Worship" section-- and this might have been the hardest one to do tastefully-- was nicely staged, an effective contrast in visual and musical mood with rest of show; attractive and moving flag design.
Good quality singing in unamplified vocals.
Most audience members loved this show.

Free Manure:
Sorry Blue Stars, but this was the only 2006 show I personally had a negative reaction to overall. Disney World-parade patriotism, designed and performed way too "Up With People" for me. Take for example (please) the annoying, over-the-top facial expressions, to the point of distorted cheerleader grinning on the guard members during "Freedom From Want", "Freedom of the Press", and "Freedom From Fear". The music was somewhat different, but visually these three sections were indistinguishable in style except for changes in the flags and a few other visual details and the rest of the design lacked connection to concept. I don't like shows driven by narration. Shut up and let the music and visuals tell your story.. If it doesn't work without a narrator, it doesn't work at all. And enough awready with "Simple Gifts" in DCI.

Crossmen “Changing Lanes”
Wolfman Jack:
Fun and lighthearted. Audience very much into it.
Reasonably good color design, a big improvement over last year's nightmare anything-went pastiche.
Effective start to the show (starting the car).
Best blend of brass and percussion, with smooth dynamic control and contrast, to this point in the show.
Best screaming “sop” soloists of 2006, in "Born To Be Wild".
The green hometown flags used by the guard in the ballad served as a reminder that each of the kids out there is not just a member of a corps, but an individual, with his or her own story. Touching and very effective.

Howard Stern:
Amplified radio announcers painfully loud where I was sitting-- I guess that's like many radio stations today, though, so maybe that fits the concept.
The extended radio segment was a little too choppy for my taste. Though again, this fits the concept, all the quick shifts in gears limit show development. For example, just as the ballad is reaching a quietly dramatic end, the announcer interrupts, saying “To those caught in congestion on I-90: all lanes are open; have a safe trip home” doesn't ring true (announcers don't say this) and drains all the emotion away. Not good.
A little too halftime show.

Colts “Continuum”
Victor Laszlo Leading “Le Marsellaise”:
Musical book, nicely arranged and well performed. "Time To Go!" and "Ride" very strong.
"As Time Goes By" powerful and moving. I didn't miss the Blue Devils' performance of this piece hearing the Colts do it.
Marching cymbals.
Very striking orange, yellow and gold flags in opener, and purple flags with stars in "As Time Goes By".
Strong power-up in "Windsprints" at the three minute mark.

Major Strasser Leading “Die Wacht Am Rhine”
Derivative visually, borrowing lots of elements from earlier designs by other corps (such as clocks-- enough awready also with the clocks on the field in DCI).
Ending drill ("Ride") is visually weak; needs more drill velocity. The corps is slowly spreading sideways. As long as you're ripping off other shows, cross left and right sides a la Cadets, fast- or run-marching past each other to get some needed visual speed there.


Spirit from JSU “Old, New, Borrowed and Blue”

Nirvana's “Smells Like Teen Spirit”
I enjoyed the concept.
Very effective use of color in guard unis and flags (other than the neon ones, which I didn't like).
Great to hear the old ("Ol' Man River/Old Black Magic" and "Waltz of the Mushroom Hunters") again, as well as the
New "On the Lake" a beautiful and moving ballad.
Flag and equipment work in guard.
Drums stronger than peers.
Very controlled performance.

The Smell of Teen Spirit
Very controlled performance. Needed to cut loose and sell it.
Horns tried to play it cool but were a bit too tentative in "Waltz of the Mushroom Hunters".
The borrowed Blue Devils arrangement of "Blues in the Night", when the horns tried to cut loose, made me miss the Blue Devils' performance of it... did not compare well. Tributes that don't exceed or match are not good tributes.
Dance work in guard fell short of equipment work.

Glassmen “Beethoven: Mastery and Madness”

Mastery:
My expectation coming in to this season was that it would be hard to carry off Beethoven music in drum corps without seeming (not this crap again) “boring”, but Glassmen do carry it off with panache and anything but ennui.
Their guard spins while wearing hats. That's not easy to do, and rarely seen today.
Phantom-like symphonic sound, essential to this show concept.
Lovely mood contrasts in "Sonata No. 14", with a great build to loud and fade back to nothing.
Fun waltz in "Diabelli".

Madness:
Some recurring horn phasing issues.
Some of the “whimsical” visual touches (such as the look of "A Chorus Line" in the guard in the opener, and the hoop skirts and ribald faces in the "Diabelli") come across a bit forced, like Steve Carell wearing a lampshade on his head at the office party. G-men guard not as over-the-top in facial expressions as Blue Stars, but still a little too "Up With People", to the point of communicating insincerity. Many other guards use happy faces without this issue.
The deliberate off-key playing in the "Ode to Joy", which seems designed to convey the onset of deafness and madness, just sounds wrong. (I think a better way to design the deafness element would have been to just have a much slower fade into silent drill, but do it in tune. After all, Beethoven wasn't writing dissonance because he was deaf-- so they shouldn't play "Ode to Joy" dissonant.)
Last 40 seconds of show is over-written musically in a way that drains away emotion and doesn't leave the audience wanting more.


Madison Scouts “Primal Forces”
New urinals in remodeled Camp Randall stadium men's rooms:
Creative and effective use of skin capes in opener (though it may hurt their scores with some guard judges, because it covers movement).
Music arrangement and drill in opener reminiscent (in a very positive way) of "Ballet In Brass".
Best company front of the year in "Danza".
Strong drumline compared to peers.

Old horse trough urinals in old Camp Randall stadium men's rooms:

The new uniforms... a little too wedding catering staff for me.
When a staff designs a dark show like this one, they face a dilemma. At some point, judging criteria demand a shift in mood and style, so they have to lighten up. Madison's staff chose to do it writing classical ballet dance moves for the guard in the Ginastera. Not a favorite decision of mine. It's unintentionally comic in those guard outfits, more Mel Brooks "Men In Tights" (“We are men! Manly men!”) than Mel Gibson "Braveheart", which was the intent. I can't take the guard seriously when they vocally grunt and go back to Primal mode in the Morricone or "Danza" after the Ginastera.

Boston Crusaders “Cathedrals of the Mind”
Gothic Cathedral
Flying start.
Rusty windmill sound effect (bowed cymbals, also heard in Phantom and Cavaliers-- it's funny how several corps get the same idea each year-- this year, it was windmill sounds... and use of purple... that are the hot trends).
Though not all judges agreed this week, I think the driving drumline propels the show. Guard also dances better than peers.
Quiet ending Goose Bump City.
Arches used to store guard equipment and keep all the clutter off the field.
Use of color, usually a Boston long suit for me.
Though judges did not reward accordingly, again, I thought they did their best show Saturday-- more intense, cleaner.

Drive-Thru Church
Most of their show music not memorable for me despite a dozen hearings this year.
Guard equipment work and hornline not as good as peers.
Arches inside a real cathedral increase one's perception of depth and height, but on a football field, ironically, Boston's arches compress height and depth and block the view of everyone not on the 50 yard line. OK, they block views in real cathedrals, too.


Blue Knights “Dark Knights”
Barber of Seville
I like this show very much, especially the opener and closer, where the darkness in the show design and effective performance blasts away the older legacy of being, don't say it, not again, boring and non-distinctive. I think darkness fits BK well if they want to home in on a style that gives them a distinct identity from one year to another.
They actually deliver the primal promise in Madison's show title.
Guard uniforms and equipment work.
Good strong opening move.
Spinning euphoniums.
Dark, edgy symphonic sound, well done and fits the show.
Rotating drill during pit feature.
Dynamic range and control.

Demon Barber of Fleet Street
Many in the audience don't connect with the Samuel Barber music, though I did.
The slow, sad minute of the middle section feels like it goes too long and was somewhat dry and dull, even I concede. Some dance movements seemed forced-emotive and lacked conviction.
Intermittent but recurring visual ensemble issues of interval and dress that were obvious even where I was sitting.

Carolina Crown “in.trance.it”
en.trance.ment
Outstanding and underscored hornline. Ran a clinic out there in tone and blend.
Visual design, at least from my poor low vantage point, looked gorgeous.
Opening drill and the peel-away hornline file during percussion feature.
Quiet ballad was serene and relaxing without being boring (hard to do).
Drill into and out of back left corner just before closer. Strong use of field generally.
Guard use of equipment.
Congrats to Drum Major Bob Beasley, who won the 2006 leadership award.

chlor.oform.ination
Musical book less demanding than corps which outscored them. (So what? I loved it.)
Dance design and guard dancing not as strong as equipment work.
Field drums not competitive.

Santa Clara Vanguard “Moto Perpetuo”
Green Feather:
En fuego on Friday, almost took fourth place then, and deservedly so.
Marching cymbals.
Better balanced than Crown, BK, Madison, and Boston, each of which has a relatively weak section or two. Consistent skill across the board is what broke them out of the 6-11th place pack they were in during July and moved them up to a 4th-6th pack by August.
Handbells.
One of the harder guard shows and drills, and demanding musical book, done well..
Mondo cool, quiet ending and spin off the field, an SCV trademark.
SCV had one of the best soundboard technicians, consistently blending amps into field sounds with a deft touch while others occasionally goofed on the high side or missed a cue.
The story behind the Moto Perpetuo horn guy... SCV classy.

Aging Out:

Musical book not at all memorable for me despite numerous hearings
Guard uniforms look unfinished. Did the color guard truck break down in Columbus?
Color design not a disaster, but weakest for me of 2006. (SCV's color design choices are often an issue for me.)

Bluecoats “connexus”
Rock Solid Connections:
Guard uniform, flag design, use of color best, I thought, in 2006.
Flying start.
Steel drums.
Very clean musically.
Flag work.
White stretchy ribbons that come and go and make you wonder how they did that.
Strong drumline compared to peers.
Saved their best show for Saturday.

Frayed Nerves:
Did not have a good show Friday-- emotionally flat. A few members were sloppy with white stretchy ribbons Friday, so now we know “how they did that”.
Visual design not as striking or hard as SCV or creative as Cadets, I thought. Musical book seemed easier, too.
Dance work not as good as equipment work.

Cadets “Volume 2: Through The Looking Glass”
Funny "Rocky Picture Horror Show" moment with crowd interaction: most people know the audience tries to talk Dani out of going through the door. Later during the Tea Party, Alice says in a Valley Girl voice, “But.. where are we?!” A group of voices in the crowd answers, “In Madison!!” OK... so maybe it was funnier if you were there.

Alice:
Fun show, superb creativity and energy.
Tea Party and percussion feature: not long ago on Sound Machine, I complained about the long stretch of no horn playing here, but now I wouldn't cut or change this highlight segment of the show. Great use of 3rd dimension by horns and guard with benches.
Backwards uniforms.
This guard can dance. And work equipment. I liked the guard better than the judges did.
Clean and controlled musical performance, horns and percussion..
Seamless transitions between show sections.
Alice (and all the characters).
"Sanvean" vocalist and soundboard technician mixing her with rest of corps saved their best performances probably of the year for Saturday. I'd still prefer it with just-hornline to vocals, but they maxed it out as designed. For anyone trying to reconcile my views of The Cadets with my views on Blue Stars, I felt this show is driven by performance, visual and musical, not by narration or vocals.

The Queen of Hearts:
The crowd responds well during most of the show, but the ending doesn't connect with the audience. There's a quiet, puzzled “What the...?” or overwhelmed, too-much-to-absorb reaction from the crowd most obvious when Dani comes back through the door at the very end.
Multitenors, when featured during the Tea Party, need more Cadets showmanship and flair, as they look bored, not cool.


Phantom Regiment “Faust”
The Saviour
Arguably the crowd's favorite show of 2006.
Gorgeous musical book, powerfully performed.
Killer drumline that deserved high caption, excellent hornline that could also have won.
Female guard quite good, pretty and flowing, male guard equally effective on the dark side.
Phantom took all season to convince me that "Ave Maria" was more than a "Fire of Eternal Glory" wannabe, but finally won me over in Madison. A classic in its own right.

Mephistopheles
I could be wrong,,, I may have misunderstood what I saw on the field (which would be another issue, anyway), or I may remember "Faust" outside of drum corps incorrectly... but I felt that Phantom “Disneyfied” the ending and screwed the concept, by making it a triumph of good (Faust) over evil (Mephistopheles). There are multiple versions of the legend of "Faust"; the Gounod opera one I'm familiar with has the death and resurrection of Faust's love interest, like Phantom, but does not have the triumph of good over evil. Far from dueling, Faust and Mephistopheles are partners and it is Faust and not Mephistopheles who loses in the end as the protagonist has tragically bargained away his eternal soul.
Corps in white especially in the dark section of the show early is a misfire, though black unis were financially impossible and wouldn't have worked for Phantom's closer the way they staged it with a relatively upbeat ending.
Drill design (except for one powerful minute late in show) not competitive with Cavies, BD, Cadets, or SCV, at least from low down, which admittedly may be an unfair criticism since I never saw it up high in the stands. But one criticism that would likely stand anyway, for me, even up high: the drill design covers and draws my eye away from the guard with a story to tell at key points unless I make a concerted effort to watch them.

Blue Devils “The Godfather Part Blue”
On Thursday and Friday, after saluting, the DM dropped his hat with a plop to the ground, and it landed in an upright position. On Saturday, it bounced and fell over on its side. I winced. It was like an Italian curse that foretold their doom (dropping to third after being no lower than second all season long).

Mama Corleone's Lasagna
Superb color guard, dance and equipment. They soften the show's visual hard edge. I preferred Cavies' CG, but I can guess that BD won this caption on the basis of range.
Drums and horns also quite good, though they didn't win.
The love theme juxtaposed with the doom theme, played by the three brass choirs, a musical and visual highlight of the show. (The soundtrack also employs this juxtaposition.)
Color design and blue visual accents-- even in the loudspeakers!
The guard hides the approaching surprise ending to great effect... a magic trick in the 1980s SCV style.

Sollozo's Tripe
Especially towards the end, show is too repetitive musically (which reflects the thin music score in the films) and too beat-and-blast at times-- the old BD saw about three dynamic levels: loud, louder, loudest... holds true here late in this relentlessly grim show. There is not enough dynamic control and mood variation there.
Whimsical touches such as Luca Brasi with dead fish flags and horse head flags, no doubt also designed to take edge off all the darkness, misfired with me. I didn't find them amusing, or chilling, just more grimness. A better way to change up the mood would have been to use the wedding reception dances from the first Godfather film, or the love ballad from the confirmation reception in Part III.

Cavaliers “MACHINE”

Smoothly Oiled Cogs
Visual performance gave them the margin they needed to hold on and win.
Extraordinarily creative and witty visual design, performed with art and grace.
They set the tone for the show, just in setting up. Best DM “corps is ready” salute of 2006.
Robocop guard uniforms, gestures, flag designs add a lot to show.
The robotic movements right out of the gate captivate the audience. The guard dares you to take your eyes off them, and rarely lose your attention.
The rubber bands. The rifle and horn passouts and putdowns. The stuck machine unjammed by a guard member. Half the guard spinning while lying down balanced on shins and hands of the other half the guard lying on the ground. New details you see and enjoy with each viewing.
Outstanding hornline.
Consistently excellent soundboard mixing.
The control. What a nice contrast to BD. This show could never be confused for beat-and-blast.

Sand in the Gears:
Too controlled on Thursday. They needed to find some fire in the belly (and Friday and Saturday, they did). I thought they were lucky to win Thursday.
Musical ending of show, with the machine slowly stopping, leaves audience flat. Seems like the ending was a design afterthought, where they couldn't think of anything better to do. I wish Cavies would learn to design a killer ending first, and work backwards from there to build up to it.
Low ordinals from drum judges all week kept BD and Phantom in the hunt and could easily have done in Cavies' championship hopes.

Favorite shows: Cavaliers, Phantom Regiment, Cadets, Carolina Crown

I probably liked them more than you did: Blue Knights
You probably liked them more than I did: Blue Stars

2006 was my favorite show of theirs, ever: Capital Regiment, Blue Knights, Carolina Crown, maybe Cavaliers as well-- have to think about this one

Favorite Hornlines: Crown, Phantom, Cavaliers

Favorite Drumlines: Phantom, Cadets, Blue Devils

Favorite Colorguards: Cavaliers, Cadets, Phantom, Blue Devils

Favorite Visuals: Cavaliers, Cadets, Blue Devils, Crown.

Favorite Musical Books: Phantom, Cavaliers, Cadets

Best Use of Amplified Vocals: Capital Regiment
Best Use of Unamplified Vocals: Blue Stars

Best Use of Color in CG unis and equipment: Bluecoats

Favorite ending: SCV

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PostPosted: Sun Aug 13, 2006 4:37 pm 
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Well done! :tup:


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PostPosted: Sun Aug 13, 2006 4:39 pm 
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The best review ever. It is so well-written, I'm going to email it to my english major.


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PostPosted: Sun Aug 13, 2006 4:42 pm 
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Me again. May I add my two funniest moments of last night?

During Cadets show, a whole group of corps members responded to Alice's question: "Where are we anyway?" with "Madison!"

Before BD's show, a guy in section EE, where we were, yelled "Leave the gun. Take the cannoli."

I thought I was gonna die. :lol:


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PostPosted: Sun Aug 13, 2006 6:35 pm 
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That is one amazing review. You must be some kind of writer as a vocation. . .just my guess.

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PostPosted: Mon Aug 14, 2006 5:59 am 
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Great Review - I'll have to print for my wife and daughter to see if they agree.

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PostPosted: Mon Aug 14, 2006 7:21 am 
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Great review RH!! I agree with most of your thoughts, so I'll just add a few other things I noticed.


I was only in attendance on Saturday night, but here are a few of my thoughts:

Venue
Typical for a college stadium, but WAY too tight and very uncomfortable. Thank goodness it wasn't as hot and humid as it was last year at Foxboro....it would have been very misearble.

Seats were pretty good, although I expected closer to the 50. We were in Section C and I thought these would have been closer in than the were given what I paid...but we were in between the 20 and 15 yard line. This effected the sound a little I think, but oh well.

Crowd was great (with the exception of a few people who are incredibly rude...more on that later).

We got very lucky with parking....one block away in a neighborhood for free.

RANT: The drive from Chicago to Madison is HORRIBLE. It took 3 1/2 hours to get there on Saturday and 4+ hours to get back to Chicago on Sunday (it should be about 2 hours at most). The new toll system is the most ridiculous thing I have ever seen. Between the construction, lack of lanes at each booth and just the number of toll booths between the Wisconsin border and Chicago....it was just insane. Then, when you finally get to the exit for O'Hare, the last toll booth is either coin only or the special I-Pass for people who commute every day. There are no attendants...no way to pay in cash. Just a sign that says call some number if you don't have coins. Are you kidding me?? After you spend all your loose change on about 5 toll booths before you get to the airport they don't have any attendants to take cash at the last one?!?! Anyway...rant off.



On to the show.....

Spirit
Not as loud as I remember them at the Atlanta show...but still enjoyed their presentation a lot and was very proud of them. The blue colorguard unis looked great!

Glassmen
Really enjoyed this show and love the deaf section. But as I figured, some rude fans had to yell "Chelsea" or whatever name during the silent part...so classless. There was also a little feedback on their amps during the silent drill.

Boston
Not too upset that they fell back to 10th as there were just too many good shows...but still a little surprised...that is three years in a row that they have fallen a spot from Semis to Finals.

Madison
When I saw them in Atlanta I thought they were being underscored, so I was glad to see them move up to 9th. Of course the hometown crowd loved the announcement of "In 10th Place......the Boston Crusaders!".

Carolina Crown
Okay.....I usually don't get too worked up with the scores, and who places where. But this one just made me mad...and with the boooos from the crowd, I know I wasn't the only one that felt this way. Their performance was incredible and the crowd ate it up. No offense to BK, but thier show just didn't get the crowd into it near as much as Crown's show. The drill design was challenging and executed very well, the guard had some very tough work and executed very well...but most of all, their sound was AMAZING! So crisp and clean....quiet when it needed to be, and loud when it needed it be. The articulation was right on. IMO, this show should have placed in 7th with a score very close to SCV/Cadets/Bluecoats. Oh well....I think the performers know how much the crowd loved them....huge reaction during the show, standing O at the end...and a big standing O during awards.

Blue Knights
I didn't really get into this show in Atlanta and thought it was very flat. While I still didn't love this show at Finals, I enjoyed it a lot more than I did in ATL. IMO, this show should have placed 9th, behind Madison and very very close to Boston. But congrats to BK...a 7th place finish is their highest in quite a while.

SCV
I LOVED this show and thought it should have finished in 5th ahead of the Cadets. The drill was very demanding and executed very well. Can't wait to see this on DVD as I know I missed a lot. Loved the ending with the roaming performer ending in front of the "V" of the cymbals. Why don't more corps in the top 12 have marching plates? They are just so fun to watch.

The Cadets
Not surprised this finished behind Bluecoats as it just didn't excite me as much as it did in Atlanta. The BOA yells from the crowd were very rude. And as Big Mo said, Hoppy was a little distracting pacing on the sideline. Very luke warm response from the crowd, and the first that didn't get a standing O from the people in my section...it was very sporadic and a number didn't even clap.

Bluecoats
I said I would need a second viewing after Atlanta...and that is exactly what I needed. Their performance on Saturday night earned the 4th spot rightfully so. Very exciting all around...great music, drill and special effects.

Blue Devils
A little repetitive as RH said, but very enjoyable nonetheless. Surprised with the number of drops in the colorguard...I saw three very high profile drops.

Phantom Regiment
Way to go!! It was very exciting to hear them announced in 2nd and I think they deserved to edge out Blue Devils. Surprised they were as close as they were to the Cavies though.

Cavies
Congrats!! Great show and deserved to be #1! Nuff said. :tup:



Encore
In Atlanta I enjoyed the new Champions Fanfare, but thought it was a little flat. I changed my mind in Madison....while I miss America/O'Canada, this piece sounded fantastic played by all the corps on the field. One thing that I really liked about it was that it featured each section of the corps.

I have never heard Elsa's Procession to the Cathedral by Phantom but got to on Saturday night as they played this facing to the endzone for the Cavies who I guess requested the performance. Beautiful!!

Cavies encore was also very enjoyable, and I loved seeing the show one more time. Rainbow was simply amazing.


Favorites of the night: Cavies, Crown, Bluecoats





Thanks to all the corps for an incredible 2006!! :bow:


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PostPosted: Mon Aug 14, 2006 9:41 am 
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chadwick wrote:
RANT: The drive from Chicago to Madison is HORRIBLE. It took 3 1/2 hours to get there on Saturday and 4+ hours to get back to Chicago on Sunday (it should be about 2 hours at most). The new toll system is the most ridiculous thing I have ever seen. Between the construction, lack of lanes at each booth and just the number of toll booths between the Wisconsin border and Chicago....it was just insane. Then, when you finally get to the exit for O'Hare, the last toll booth is either coin only or the special I-Pass for people who commute every day. There are no attendants...no way to pay in cash. Just a sign that says call some number if you don't have coins. Are you kidding me?? After you spend all your loose change on about 5 toll booths before you get to the airport they don't have any attendants to take cash at the last one?!?! Anyway...rant off.



:


:lol: You mean you don't like Governor Blago's "open road tolling"? Jim has an I-pass since he drives I-88 and I-294 every weekday for work.

When I'm in the car with him, as I was Thursday and Saturday night on I-88 going to Madison, Jim never fails to offer commentary on his opinion of Governor Blago's "open road tolling". Poor Blago. It's not very complimentary either, right Jim? :lol: :lol:

I love Chicago, lived here my entire life, Chadwick, but I will say it has become an ever increasing traffic nightmare and it's only getting worse.

Glad you enjoyed the show and your trip to Madison. We had a great time too.


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PostPosted: Mon Aug 14, 2006 9:41 am 
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It seemed to me that for all 3 days, the first corps to REALLY get the crowd going and on their feet was Crown. People were on their feet after their opener. Crown really connected with the audience and vice versa.

just my 2 cents worth.....

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PostPosted: Mon Aug 14, 2006 10:04 am 
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Old Mike wrote:
It seemed to me that for all 3 days, the first corps to REALLY get the crowd going and on their feet was Crown. People were on their feet after their opener. Crown really connected with the audience and vice versa.

just my 2 cents worth.....


I don't know if Crown was the first corps to get to the crowd, but they certainly DID make the connection. I didn't know a single tune they played, but they certainly sold them to me. I know earlier this month I wondered about Madison beating them in horns and drums, but losing to them in ensemble. I think I understand why they were winning ensemble - they really put that horn sound out to the audience.

One of my favorites over the weekend.

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PostPosted: Mon Aug 14, 2006 10:28 am 
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Awesome review, RH.

One of the things that surprised me about BD's show is that, with all the other symbolism they included, they couldn't find a way to include a bag of oranges (or the color orange)? That's one of the key pieces of symbolism in the first Godfather movie.

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PostPosted: Mon Aug 14, 2006 11:06 am 
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In 05 it was Phantom. This year, you say, it was Crown. Glad to read that true fans know what's a good show.


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PostPosted: Mon Aug 14, 2006 11:21 am 
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Terri1957 wrote:
:lol: You mean you don't like Governor Blago's "open road tolling"? Jim has an I-pass since he drives I-88 and I-294 every weekday for work.

When I'm in the car with him, as I was Thursday and Saturday night on I-88 going to Madison, Jim never fails to offer commentary on his opinion of Governor Blago's "open road tolling". Poor Blago. It's not very complimentary either, right Jim? :lol: :lol:

I love Chicago, lived here my entire life, Chadwick, but I will say it has become an ever increasing traffic nightmare and it's only getting worse.

Glad you enjoyed the show and your trip to Madison. We had a great time too.


What we thought was interesting was that traffic close to the city wasn't bad at all. It was from the Wisconsin border to about 1/2 hour outside O'Hare that it was miserable...and it was all due to the toll booths. I have never been on a freeway where there is a toll every 10-15miles. I think we went through 5 or so, and then one that was closed we still had to pay for in advance at a different toll booth where they just charged double.

We stayed at the Sheraton in downtown Chicago Thursday and Friday nights....I really like Chicago. Very clean city and a lot to do. We'll definitly be back to the city....but will look forward to not having to drive to the suburbs.

Anyway....enough of that.


I just now looked at the recaps from Saturday night and it is nice to see that the brass judge gave some credit to Crown as they finished in 6th with this caption. Their sound was just amazing.


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chadwick wrote:
Terri1957 wrote:
:lol: You mean you don't like Governor Blago's "open road tolling"? Jim has an I-pass since he drives I-88 and I-294 every weekday for work.

When I'm in the car with him, as I was Thursday and Saturday night on I-88 going to Madison, Jim never fails to offer commentary on his opinion of Governor Blago's "open road tolling". Poor Blago. It's not very complimentary either, right Jim? :lol: :lol:

I love Chicago, lived here my entire life, Chadwick, but I will say it has become an ever increasing traffic nightmare and it's only getting worse.

Glad you enjoyed the show and your trip to Madison. We had a great time too.


What we thought was interesting was that traffic close to the city wasn't bad at all. It was from the Wisconsin border to about 1/2 hour outside O'Hare that it was miserable...and it was all due to the toll booths. I have never been on a freeway where there is a toll every 10-15miles. I think we went through 5 or so, and then one that was closed we still had to pay for in advance at a different toll booth where they just charged double.

We stayed at the Sheraton in downtown Chicago Thursday and Friday nights....I really like Chicago. Very clean city and a lot to do. We'll definitly be back to the city....but will look forward to not having to drive to the suburbs.

Anyway....enough of that.


I just now looked at the recaps from Saturday night and it is nice to see that the brass judge gave some credit to Crown as they finished in 6th with this caption. Their sound was just amazing.


I love me some Chicago as well. The wife and I have said that if it were not for families and good jobs down here, we would move up there in a heartbeat.

Another thought. . .yes Crown did get some credit for their brass, but I still would have had them higher than 6th.

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 Post subject: RH'S Report
PostPosted: Mon Aug 14, 2006 12:22 pm 
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Best review I have seen to date and I have been around the world twice and attended at least two county fairs....all joking a side, fantastic report. SCV placement was 6th as you deducted and your views on the color guard uniforms are shared. Thanks

BEN

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