The Rockford High School (RHS) marching band earned top honors for marching in Flight I competition at the Michigan Competing Band Association (MCBA) state finals held at Ford Field on Saturday, Nov. 6. Overall, the band earned third place with a score of 86.18 out of 11 bands competing in their flight. Walled Lake Central earned first with a score of 88.45, followed by Plymouth-Canton with 87.12. “We had an unbelievable performance! The students did a wonderful job and we had a clean, focused show,” said RHS band director, Brian Phillips. “Flight I is the most competitive flight at state finals, with each competing band presenting a solid performance.” In Flight I, the span between the top five bands was just over three points, with the average span for the other flights at seven points. Since joining the MCBA in 2005, RHS has qualified for state finals every year and has moved up in rank from seventh place the first year to third in 2009 and 2010. “We have proved that our third-place finish last year was not a fluke. Rockford is someone to contend with in the years ahead!” added seniors Andrew Christianson and Alex Quinn. Rockford’s marching program is unique compared to the bands they face at state finals. “For many of the schools, band is an extracurricular program. Students try out for a spot in the ensemble and they rehearse several hours a day. For our program, all kids who desire to be in band are part of the program. We meet for one class hour a day and typically rehearse just one evening a week, which is about three times less than our competitors,” according to Phillips. The biggest point of pride for Phillips is how the students rehearse. “The students are prepared and rehearse in an efficient manner,” explained Phillips. “The show constantly evolves and each member has a desire for growth that brings a level of sophistication to our ensemble.” And that is not an easy task with over 200 teenagers in the program this year to keep organized and focused. Looking ahead, Phillips sees only an “exciting and bright future” for the marching band. The band now moves into concert season with the wind ensemble’s brass section performing at the […]
Rockford High School Marching Band
In their last regular season competition, the Rockford High School (RHS) marching band swept top honors in Flight I competition at the West Shore Invitational on Saturday, Oct. 30 with a score of 83.53 and won all caption awards for music, marching and general effect. Twenty-one bands participated in the invitational, which was held at Rockford’s Ted Carlson Memorial Stadium and was sponsored by Reeths-Puffer High School. Brian Phillips, RHS band director, was happy with band’s evening performance. “It was our best performance yet, by far, and the students and staff are all very excited about where the show is going. They have so much to be proud of!” Following the West Shore Invitational, Rockford is seeded fifth in Flight I state standings—based on the average of each band’s top two scores—with the Michigan Competing Band Association (MCBA). The top 11 bands in each flight competed at the MCBA state championship on Saturday, Nov. 6 at Ford Field in Detroit. Newaygo swept the field in Flight IV taking all captions and a score of 75.18. In Flight III, Stevensville Lakeshore took the caption for marching with a score of 77.56 behind first-place winner Byron Center, 77.91, who took music and general effect awards. In Flight II, Jenison dominated the field with a score of 84.91 and won all captions. Rockford’s 2010 show, entitled “Steel, Steam and Speed,” based on Frank Sullivan’s “Fast Track,” is a high-energy show and centers on the aesthetic sounds and experiences of locomotion.
The Rockford High School marching band captured first place in Flight I competition at the Jenison Invitational on Saturday, Oct. 23 with a score of 85.31 and swept top honors for music, marching and general effect. Brian Phillips, Rockford marching band director, commented, “The students are truly working hard and pulling together an exciting show. Every week, we’ve been able to add more to an already complex presentation.” The grand champion honor for the evening was awarded to Reeths-Puffer, who posted a score of 87.02 in Flight II performance. Other top winners included Stevensville Lakeshore with 79.39 in Flight III, and Newaygo with 74.17 in Flight IV. Schools are ranked by MCBA in one of four flights according to school enrollment figures the previous spring. In order to qualify for state finals at Ford Field on November 6, bands must compete in at least two MCBA-sanctioned contests and place among the 11 highest scoring bands in its flight. Rockford has made the state finals every year since joining the association. Under MCBA contest rules, bands are judged by seven adjudicators in four general areas: music performance, visual performance, general music effect, and general visual effect. Under both music and visual performances, the band is rated on individual and ensemble performances and involves judges both on and off the field during the performance. Rockford’s band has one remaining MCBA event—the Reeths-Puffer West Shore Invitational on October 30, which was held in the Ted Carlson Memorial Stadium at Rockford High School—before the state championship at Ford Field. For more information visit www.rockfordbands.org.
For the second year in the row, the Rockford High School marching band won the grand champion award at the 25th annual Otsego High School Invitational on Saturday, Sept. 25. Twenty-three high schools performed in this year’s competition with Rockford taking first overall with a score of 93.3 out of 100 possible points. Rockford also won best in class AA for music, color guard and drum major performances. This event was a scholastic marching band competition. Each band is judged on music performance, music effect, marching performance and visual effect. The following schools placed first in their respective classes: • Class A, Byron Center, 89.7 • Class BB, Gull Lake, 81.4 • Class B, Plainwell, 83.1 • Class C, Newaygo, 83.3 • Class D, Gobles, 74.0 “I thought the kids did a great job Saturday night,” said Brian Phillips, Rockford band director. “We have a strong base for our show. Our job now is to build—we have much to add—and refine—we have much to clean—as we finish the program!” The band now begins their competitive bid to qualify for the Michigan Competing Band Association (MCBA) state championship at Detroit’s Ford Field on November 6. In order to qualify, bands must compete in at least two MCBA-sanctioned contests and place among the 11 highest scoring bands in its flight. Rockford has made the state finals every year since joining the MCBA and placed third at last year’s championship. Rockford has three competitions remaining on their schedule, and all are MCBA-sanctioned events. To help with program costs for all age groups in the Rockford band program, including the high school’s upcoming performance at Walt Disney World over Christmas break, the Rockford band parents are selling raffle tickets for a chance to win a new 2011 Chevrolet Malibu. Tickets are $25 each or five for $100, and are available at any home football game, through any student in the Rockford band program, or at Kool Chevrolet on Plainfield Ave. in Grand Rapids. The drawing is scheduled for Rockford’s homecoming football game on October 15. For more information, visit the Rockford band’s website at www.rockfordbands.org.
The Rockford High School (RHS) marching band hosted its 28th Annual Rockford Marching Invitational on Saturday, Sept. 18. “It was wonderful to have so many talented groups join us this year,” said RHS Band Director Brian Phillips. “It’s unusual to see this kind of participation so early in the season, not to mention how well-prepared they are already!” The event, a Scholastic Marching Band competition, featured 21 Class C, B and A schools. Each band was judged on music performance, music effect, marching performance and visual effect, providing valuable feedback for the organizations. Awards are presented based on the top score in all these areas. Additional caption awards are also presented for music, marching, percussion and auxiliary performances. Rockford’s marching band performed in exhibition during the invitation and was also judged, although was not eligible to receive awards due to its role as host. In Class C competition, Newaygo took top honors for both captions and overall performance. Godwin Heights repeated these honors for Class B competition. For Class A competition, Northview won the auxiliary caption, Otsego the percussion caption, and top honors went to Byron Center for music, marching and overall performance. Byron Center also was named the 2010 grand champion. In addition to showcasing talented performances, the invitational also serves as a major fundraiser for RHS bands. Rockford is scheduled to compete in invitationals at Otsego on September 25, Plymouth-Canton on October 2, Jenison on October 23, and RHS is hosting the Reeths-Puffer competition at the Ted on October 30. The marching season culminates with a final competition through the Michigan Competing Band Association (MCBA) state championship, which takes place at Detroit’s Ford Field on November 6. In order to qualify for state finals, bands must compete in at least two MCBA-sanctioned contests and place among the 11 highest scoring bands in its flight. Rockford has made the state finals every year since joining the MCBA. For more information on Rockford bands visit www.rockfordbands.org.