Let's examine the Blue Knights


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OMG I have noticed this too.

I have noticed plenty of times this year on tour as a volunteer with a top 12 corps, where a corps will change part of their show, and the very next performance, you'd think the score would go down or be stagnant, at least, because the new sections are still a little dirty - well waddayaknow, they gain 1.5 pts. Or they gain .4. Whatever, it's like the judges remember more about what score they gave them last time, than remember what their show was like last time. It's like the judges are just going through the motions at that point.

I hate to scream conspiracy, but I'd imagine it's a very, very tough thing to do, to judge a show. And a lot of judges are judging different captions on different competitions.

Someone needs to invent a supercomputer to judge drum corps shows. Maybe then no one will complain about scores? Maybe a computer can judge things like execution, but probably not GE...

Anyways, the Blue Knights deserve to be in 8th or 9th, and that is right about where they are at this point, I think.

They should be beating Boston. Any show with singing in it ought to get the axe from the judging system.

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People - LOOK ON THE FIELD! BK are consistently BORING every year. Fault? Not the Kids in the Corps. THE DIRECTION / VISION is at fault. BD stand and play. Sit and Play. Their Marching and Execution

OMG I have noticed this too. I have noticed plenty of times this year on tour as a volunteer with a top 12 corps, where a corps will change part of their show, and the very next performance, you'd th

If one more person tries to compare drum corps to sports I think I'm going to be sick.

OMG I have noticed this too.

I have noticed plenty of times this year on tour as a volunteer with a top 12 corps, where a corps will change part of their show, and the very next performance, you'd think the score would go down or be stagnant, at least, because the new sections are still a little dirty - well waddayaknow, they gain 1.5 pts. Or they gain .4. Whatever, it's like the judges remember more about what score they gave them last time, than remember what their show was like last time. It's like the judges are just going through the motions at that point.

I hate to scream conspiracy, but I'd imagine it's a very, very tough thing to do, to judge a show. And a lot of judges are judging different captions on different competitions.

Someone needs to invent a supercomputer to judge drum corps shows. Maybe then no one will complain about scores? Maybe a computer can judge things like execution, but probably not GE...

Anyways, the Blue Knights deserve to be in 8th or 9th, and that is right about where they are at this point, I think.

They should be beating Boston. Any show with singing in it ought to get the axe from the judging system.

The singing is in Boston's pre-show. And Blue Knights have that song playing during their pre-show, why is that so different?

Edited by Drum Corps Nation
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The singing is in Boston's pre-show. And Blue Knights have that song playing during their pre-show, why is that so different?

You beat me to it. Boywonder1911, Please actually watch both shows before making a comment like that. Also, the only times BK has been close to/beaten BAC was at small shows with local judges. At any show this year with "big wig" judges BAC has been clearly ahead. Don't mean to flame, but you are simply have your facts wrong.

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I wanted to see what the perceptions are of BK before waying in. Here's some thoughts:

1) BK members have won World Titles every year!!! With other corps.:( That said this staff and group of kids in BK is dedicated to staying with the Blue Knights to make it into something special! Crown's the Grass is Always Greener is proof that even the Big Boys have retention issues or thoughts. Over the years when BK retains they have their best years. 99 and 00 saw them in the top 5 for some of the season before finishing 7th and 6th respectively. That group of kids started in the corps with me in 97 as 15-16 year olds! We bought into the corps and they kept coming back! In 06-07 it was great retention from 04-05. Now they're not only retaining but they're shows are exciting new batches of talent that want to be a part of the type of show they've chosen to perform! As a recruiter with them I can tell u the retention from a year ago was astounding and on top of it they've got great players top to bottom in each section! I believe they'll retain again and attract even more and better talent, thus I believe they'll continue to rise!:)

2) show designs are key to the success of any corps. That said, u cannot go out and write a championship caliber show before your kids have the technique/vocabulary and music skills to be in that realm! It's a building process! Since the current staff has been in place the last 3 years they've done something remarkable. They have changed the identity of the corps becoming more fan friendly and overhauled the marching technique. That for many corps is a death sentence.... Look at what happened to Madison after the Stewart Firing and the ways changing affected the Scouts. What is so positive about BK is that they completely overhauled themselves but didn't drop out of finals. In 09 they had a hard show that maybe was too hard and the members got injured a lot. 2010 was written to show precise and clean drill and wonderful music to engage the audience! 2010 was a huge step up for BK no matter what the placement was or if it didn't change. 2011 is BK showing they've matured and thus they have a show that's fan friendly, very challenging and they've got many more sophisticated moments/grown up corps moments if you well!! They are improving leaps and bounds and the staff has done marvelous at changing the Blue Knights without Killing the Blue Knights!

3) I think people are forgetting how truly consistent BK has been! Sure they'd love to be and want to be a Champ or top 6 corps one day and they be very possible some day. But since 91 BK has been a finalist 16 times out of 20 years!! That's remarkable for a corps that is on a drum corps island kinda by itself. BK has been so consistent because they have maybe the most underrated Corps Directors- Mark Arnold!:) Matk has been with the corps since the mid 80's and is the third longest tenured corps director in the business! He has always put together wonderful staffs and worked harder and more efficiently to get the best fir the corps! Having people like Hardimon, Robby Billings, Sully, Jay Bocook come work with the corps is a testament to his willingness to seek out the best! I know more than that he loves the Blue Knights and whether u march 1 year or 10, he'll remember u and show the same warmth and kindness he did when u marched!

So why is BK in the top 12 almost every year? Because they've got great leadership, great kids and great shows. Should they be considered a group that's not doing well cause they're not 5? Absolutely NOT! They've got to continue to retain and grow as members. This corps is not far off from being a top 5 corps, and I believe it's in their future! In the short term, they're sitting in 8th coming into tonight:-)! GO BLUE KNIGHTS GET ENGLISH BABY!!

Wes Perkins

BK 97 97

Kudos to you for your comments! Thank you!!

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You beat me to it. Boywonder1911, Please actually watch both shows before making a comment like that. Also, the only times BK has been close to/beaten BAC was at small shows with local judges. At any show this year with "big wig" judges BAC has been clearly ahead. Don't mean to flame, but you are simply have your facts wrong.

Speaking of facts wrong.... Haha ok maybe a little. I don't know who judged in Sioux Falls but in Massillion it was a good amount of bigger names that will likely judge at semis or finals. Off the top of my head- Kyle Miller, Richard Saucedo, J. R. Carlisle and Mike Rubino all judged. Not sure why u minamize them getting beat by BK? BK is very close to Boston in performance level and beat them both times fair and square! The night Boston was .2 behind SCV was there so excuse as to why it happened? No! The judges are calling the way they see it and it's refreshing and is the way it should be. I don't know that Madison or BK beat Boston again this summer but that gap from last night could close or not based off each judges call. Isn't that way its supposed to be?

Wes P

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People - LOOK ON THE FIELD! BK are consistently BORING every year.

Fault? Not the Kids in the Corps. THE DIRECTION / VISION is at fault.

BD stand and play. Sit and Play. Their Marching and Execution of Drill is never good

and never their strong suit. BUT they can PLAY.

This said: Cavies and PR, Cadets and Crown all consistently PERFORM and give the crowd a SHOW every year.

THIS is why they are ON TOP.

Look at the Top 6: BK cannot hold a candle to ANY of these Corps.

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BK placed 5th in prelims/quarterfinals in 1999 if I am not mistaken, before falling to Glassmen and Scouts, so they have had the potential to end the season in top 5. In 2000, they had their highest placing finals ever, placing 6th. However in 2001 they had a show called Cartoon that most people didn't care for(I didn't quite think it should have been down all the way to 14th).

I am not sure what happened the next few years from the judging standpoint, as I thought 2002 was one of their best productions ever, and should have beaten at least 2 or 3 of the top 12 corps that year. Then the judges seemed to be stagnant in their opinion of BK the next couple of years. I think BK is possibly one of the more underrated corps, but I think the last few years the judges have gotten it right.

Edited by MisterA
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People - LOOK ON THE FIELD! BK are consistently BORING every year.

Fault? Not the Kids in the Corps. THE DIRECTION / VISION is at fault.

BD stand and play. Sit and Play. Their Marching and Execution of Drill is never good

and never their strong suit. BUT they can PLAY.

This said: Cavies and PR, Cadets and Crown all consistently PERFORM and give the crowd a SHOW every year.

THIS is why they are ON TOP.

Look at the Top 6: BK cannot hold a candle to ANY of these Corps.

Before people jump in on this one... Its clear from a few of your posts on these subjects that you have a problem with the structure that makes up our organization. I would be interested in hearing more about what you have seen, experienced, and know about the direction and vision of blue knights. In being fair and open, hopefully we as a community can learn more of where you are coming from.

With that said, maybe I can give the little insight I know about on the direction and vision of the Blue Knights. Over the past 5 years, major changes have been made to the creative staff and instructional staff. For staff, current members, and alumni it has been a very turbulent time. I do have to say that I remain heartbroken that Robbie Billings is no longer with the organization. I know that was probably a very hard decision to be made after so many years of tireless service to the organization and with such a popular following with the alumni. This opened the door to hiring DCI Hall of Fame member Marc Sylvester to lead the visual design. This has brought a completely different marching technique and visual philosophy. A big chunk of consistent visual staff was turned over. On the music end, I have to say I don't know when the change over happened, but from 2002 to one of the past few years we were using Russ Newbury as the arranger and creative influence on the book. The past few years we have shifted when we brought Jim Prime on board - yet another DCI Hall of Fame member. With all of the changes at the top of the organization it is amazing that performance quality has not decreased. The last major shift like this was in 2001 - results speak for themselves at that time. As an alumni, I have not agreed with some of the decisions made, but can see that they were made for the survival of the corps. You may not be excited about the shows that the current and past Blue Knights have put on the field, but know that the organization has taken great sacrifices in order to provide a new vision for the Blue Knights - a vision many people in this community seem to respect and be excited about.

If you would like to get to know more about the vision and direction, the Blue Knights are always looking for people to help out at camps and on tour.

Edited by MnM
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It doesn't matter if it is preshow or not - it's still on the field.

I'd bet that if some corps started up a woodwind quintet for their pre-show, there would be plenty words said about it in here.

I am just not a fan of singing in drum corps shows, pre-show or not. Recordings are a little different, because at least there is some sort of quality, but have never enjoyed any kind of singing by any marchers.

I guess Crown is kinda at fault for my feeling that way, when they blurted out, depressingly, "nothing really matters..." at the end of their Bohemia show.

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