MISHAWAKA — The Crimson Marching Band of Goshen High School had a taste of serious Class A competition Saturday night at the Penn Carnival of Bands — and they fared well earning second place.
The final show on the field was “The Night Circus” performed by the 291-member Homestead Spartan Alliance marching band, the 2012 State runners-up in Class A and five-time state winners.
Homestead won all three caption awards including Best Music, Best Visual and Best General Effect and was given a score of 80.15. Goshen’s 190-member band, with its program, “Jacob’s Ladder,” took second with 74.60 points.
“I am super proud of the kids,” said Goshen Band Director Tom Cox. “We felt great about being second to the state runner up in Class A. Homestead is a great band and we are holding our own in Class A.”
Cox said that while the band performed their entire show Saturday night, there is still plenty to do.
“All the drill is on the field, so you could say the show is done,” Cox said. “But you are never really done. There still a lot left to do. However, I felt very good about the performance.”
Fort Wayne’s Carroll High School took third place with a score of 73.50. Participation awards were given to Portage, Warsaw, Northrup, Chesterton, LaPorte and Snider.
Saturday evening’s hosts, The Penn High School Marching Kingsmen, performed “CoNEXTion” in Exhibition Class.
The Concord Marching Minutemen brought their A game to Class B competition sweeping all the caption awards and placing first with a score of 73.10.
“It was a perfect night, perfect weather, perfect conditions — perfect everything,” said Band Director Scott Spradling. “We had an awesome rehearsal today and all week. So basically I just told the kids that I was really hoping they would have a good performance because they worked so hard. And they did.”
Completing the entire show at the Penn Invitational was a first for Concord.
“We played all of it, which is a first for us ever to do this early in the season,” Spradling said. “But we’ve got a long way to go. Our show is not done. We have more charts to do and the guard has work to do.”
Spradling said the show, “RISE – The Revolution Within” is about 65 to 75 percent complete and will feature more movement from the band as the season continues.
“Our show is very difficult and complex for us and we are really just sorting things through,” Spradling said. “The kids seem to finally have their legs under them enough to go out there and do more than just survive. They put a lot of extra effort in the moments because they felt comfortable with it. So I was very pleased with tonight.”
The Pride of Plymouth marching band placed second with their performance of “451.” They received a judges’ score of 69.00 points.
Coming in a close third with a score of 67.35 was the Raider Marching Band of Northridge High School performing “Absolute Power.”
“I thought it was a very good performance and we were really confident,” said Drum Major Michelle Jones. “We definitely worked out a lot of things. I am very happy with what we put on the field.”
Director Brad Zook agreed that the band accomplished what he wanted.
“I was very happy with it. All of the things we fixed in rehearsal showed up in the performance — so we met our goal,” he said.
Assistant Director Bryce Cone said the students were very excited to put most of the final movement on the field.
“I think it was really great that we got to share more of our music,” Cone said. “I’d say we have about one third left to perform. It should be ready in two weeks for the invitational at Memorial High School.”
Participation awards were given in Class B to Elkhart Central, John Adams, Lowell, Huntington North, Elkhart Memorial and North Side.
A little bit of a rivalry has developed on the marching field between the Class C Farifield Marching Pride and the Angola Marching Hornets.
In week one of competition, the Hornets swept the captions and earned first place with Fairfield coming in second. Performing at separate competitions during week two, Fairfield earned two caption awards and a first place finish, while Angola placed second at the Lawrence Central Invitational.
The two met up again this week at Penn Carnival of Bands.
Fairfield took the Best Music and Best Visual awards, while Angola earned the Best General Effect Award.
However, at the end of the evening, the Hornets placed first with a score of 64.20. The Fairfield Marching Pride with their show “Everyone Has a Dark Side,” was just 1.15 points behind with a score of 63.05.
“From many years of being in marching band, being on staff and now being director, I know it’s not over, until it’s over!” said Fairfield Director Andrew Muth. “Right now we are very happy that we were awarded in two captions today.”
Muth remembered last year’s show at the Penn Carnival of Bands had a little different outcome.
“Ironically, the only caption award we won here last year was Best General Effect and we won the show,” Muth said. “And here the exact opposite thing happened. But we all know that last season turned out well for us and we know that this is going to be a great season too.”
Muth said the results were not a setback for the band.
“When other band programs are succeeding, that just pushes us all to be better. This is just going to push us forward,” he said.
The Red Regiment of NorthWood High School placed third in the competition with 61.80 points. Their show is titled “Tenebris Nocte” (Dark Night).
We added a lot of musical content and I heard that coming from the field,” said Director Eric Criss. “We had some technical issues with the sound system and some backdrop problems. Those are things you can’t always predict. But the kids did their job and those other things are just bumps in the road that will iron out next time.”
Wawasee, John Glenn, Knox and Leo high schools were given participation awards in Class C competition.
Wawasee and Fairfield will perform at the Homestead Invitational next weekend. NorthWood will be on the field at both the Homestead and Plymouth Invitationals on Saturday.
Goshen High School performs its show at the Bands of America regional competition at Ball State University. Concord and Northridge will perform in two weeks at the Elkhart Memorial Invitational on Oct. 12.