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Everything posted by Woochifer

  1. 1992 Finals, just to catch the crowd reaction when the shark made its first and only appearance of the season
  2. At DCI West last month, the Mandarins got a huge ovation -- probably the loudest crowd response of the night (helped that much of the audience was split evenly between BD and SCV partisans who come together to cheer on the Mandarins). Also helps that the Mandarins' show just grabs the audience's attention, and the corps members sell it big time. My impression was that the show was very ragged around the edges, but had a lot of room for growth. For decades, they were the little corps that could. Now, they're competing with the big guns and riding a huge wave of momentum that has been years
  3. For anyone who wants to see what the new ending added to the Velvet Knights' 1992 show, this is the video link to their semifinal performance (need to unmute the audio to listen to it). The famous "crocodile" had not yet made its debut. But, after watching this I realized that the "King of the Monsters" was yet ANOTHER finals night addition. Given that VK missed the cut for finals the year before, and were far from a sure bet to make it to finals the following night, how the hell did they manage to hold back two of their best gags until the finals performance? VK 1992 Semifinal - Mag
  4. The moment that the world came to an end (still the greatest closer of all-time)! 😀 It ain't over til the ...
  5. Great night all around. Some general impressions. Troopers: Seemed like they made some stylistic changes this season. Enjoyed the show, refreshingly free from gimmickry. The Academy: Very interesting visually. But, as with last year's show, it seemed that the props got in the way more often than they added to the show. I know that they made a lot of improvements as the season progressed last year, and I would expect the same to happen this year. The music and the overall look has a lot of potential, but it seems very rough right now. Mandarins: With the crowd largely split betwe
  6. I would guess it happened sometime around 1982. Huge transformation all the way around. They ditched the traditional unis and went to straw hats, Hawaiian shirts, and Converse high tops. This is a video that someone shot during an early season retreat that year. The drum majors played up their California beach bum persona by setting up lawn chairs and a drink cooler instead of the usual standing at attention. And this time, the Blue Devil DMs got into the act. I've read other accounts that DMs from other corps also began pranking the VK DMs during retreat throughout that season. http
  7. 05 -- the last year that BD failed to medal ... IIRC, that was the year when they spent the summer touring Europe. They came back to the states a few weeks before finals. The show itself was the Dance Derby of the Century ... basically a turn of the century dance marathon, except in reverse. I only saw it on TV. Looked like a fun show, but it was one of those times where I thought BD was being too clever for their own good. And I would imagine that with the international travel, they couldn't refine the show as much as they normally would.
  8. I probably came into this from a warped perspective, because the first drumcorps show I ever attended was highlighted by the uproarious 1992 Velvet Knights. That show was silly and hilarious and more akin to a live action Looney Tunes cartoon, with so many moments that I've never forgotten. VK had missed finals the year before, so they upped the ante with the gags and played with a determination to make it back into the top 12, which they did. BD and SCV were on the same program, yet VK got by far the loudest ovation. And I heard that the boisterous crowd responses followed them all season lon
  9. I've only seen Phantom in person a couple of times (2005 and 2008) when they came out west. But, I recall that those shows moved and engaged the audience in different ways. The 2005 Gershwin show was a joy to watch, while the 2008 Spartacus show was just gripping from end to end. I also respected that Phantom steered clear of the gimmickry that was starting to take hold at that time. The '08 BD show looked like a much more difficult show, but they got too cute and high concept for their own good. It probably should have won just looking at that show objectively in a vacuum, but Phantom's
  10. There's a lot of sentiment and circumstance in favor of the Mandarins. At first, there was all the talk and momentum behind them making World Class finals for the first time in their long history. Now, with their spot in the finals seemingly secure (I would say they have a much better than 50-50 shot at this point), the question has shifted to whether they break into the top 10. Because there are only so many spots in finals and in the top 10, their ascendancy will come at someone else's expense. Last season, Madison Scouts barely held the Mandarins off for that 12th spot. But, with the t
  11. The Mandarins were by far the biggest surprise when I saw them at Stanford. They probably also garnered the biggest ovation that night. (The crowd was largely split between BD and SCV fans, but everyone pulled for the Mandarins) I hadn't been to a show in about 4 years, and that was apparently the time period in which the Mandarins paved the path for their emergence. Last time I saw them, they didn't field a full-sized corps -- not even close. Shocking enough for me to see the Mandarins as a full-sized corps, but to also see them performing a bold in-your-face show that takes a lot of cha
  12. The show at Stanford last month was the first one I'd attended in about 4 years. And I was floored at how elaborate the props had gotten. Yes, they can add to a show, but they can also be a major hindrance. I thought the props were more of a distraction with the Academy. It looked more like the performers were battling with the props than actually performing. That was a show where the props got in the way very often, and did not add enough to the show. I heard that they made a lot of changes to their show afterwards, so I haven't seen whether they figured out how to make the props work mo
  13. Ah yes! The shark eats the "fat lady"! Maybe the greatest closing gag ever. It propelled VK's show from that year's crowd favorite to all-time legendary status. Just look at how often that 1992 Velvet Knights performance shows up on people's all-time lists. I don't see too many non-winning performances, not to mention 10TH PLACE performances, that are so fondly remembered decades later. And it seems that the show's legend has kept growing over the years. I’ve lost count of the number of times I’ve read about how that was the loudest DCI crowd reaction ever. How the raucous ovation bl