WGI starting a Winds division


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As a HS music teacher I would maybe wonder if this would conflict with festival season (which starts in Jan. with beginning to rehearse music, and festival performances begin in mid/late February and last until early/mid April for my HS & HS's in my district), but as of right now this doesn't seem to be an issue for our students. I think it's great, and will be curious to see how this pans out over the next few years. Some local circuits have tried the winter indoor wind/brass ensembles before with little interest. Maybe WGI backing it (and working in concert with DCI's Sound Sport, even obliquely) will help foster this activity

Hopefully. But as you say, there will be conflicts. I think the best musicians will probably stick with their wind ensembles, orchestras, and jazz ensembles during those months. And with the funding crunch being such an issue all over the country, I'm not sure how much this endeavor will gain traction. It will definitely be interesting to see how thinks shake out.

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This is the future for today's Open Class drum corps. The economic sense of running a summer program just isn't there, but this would allow those with smaller, local membership bases to compete in a f

This is how we started Gulf Coast Sound drum and bugle corps back in 2002 - we teamed up with the University of Houston's winter guard and competed in the Texas Color Guard Circuit Independent World c

I've been wanting to see an indoor marching brass and percussion (and potentially guard) circuit since like 2008. I should've pitched the idea back then.

What a shame!!! Winter Guard would be a great venue for a garage-rock band, a small jazz combo, or other small musical groups to get some performance time and more importantly performance exposure. But, as some have stated here on DCP, this activity is apparently ‘ALL about the Visual'; so who cares if the music is done live, lip-synced, uses air-guitar and air-drummed, or better yet... just recorded.

That's sort of my thing in regards to marching brass being in the circuit. As a mellophone player, I didn't really have an outlet as far as marching went (goes?) during the winter. Marching brass has drum corps in the summer and marching band in the fall (and practice throughout the year) but no really performance outlets, whereas, as we know, percussionists and guard members have drum corps followed by marching band followed by WGI.

What's sort of your thing: that you believe/agree with Stu that WGI is all about visual and your disappointed with this inclusion of winds? If that's case I think at the very least we should wait & see before judging what WGI Winds will be like. WGI Percussion is definitely NOT all about visual, and IIRC Music is weighted more than visual. Groups who are strong visually and in effect but weak in music don't succeed: I would argue the opposite, actually. In 2010 Pulse won WGI Independent World with an incredibly clean music performance, beating out Rhythm X who had a much stronger visual package but dirtier finals run musically.

I'm not sure if you're still of age to participate or not, but I've known plenty of brass players who either learned enough about guard to participate with WGI Guards, or learned percussion instrument to perform with WGI Percussion. I know that's little consolation, and I personally would likely not have wanted to participate in WGI enough to pick up a flag or learn a brass instrument (I'm a percussionist who did participate in WGI while marching drum corps) so I get where you're coming from. Maybe this will be a new outlet for brass people who need to scratch the competitive marching itch during the winter time before spring training starts for their drum corps

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This is the future for today's Open Class drum corps. The economic sense of running a summer program just isn't there, but this would allow those with smaller, local membership bases to compete in a format that lends itself to their size and time constraints.

And some of these independent units could compete in a Summer League version of this under DCI's auspices, if DCI took the next step and created it. SoundSport was always a logo and a general idea looking for a structure; have WGI create the competitive structure for winter, tweak it for the summer performances, and you could have year-round drum corps for those who want to compete but don't want to have to spend $400k a year to do so (and more units for local show promoters to use in creating their lineups).

This might very well be correct: maybe even ALL competitive drum corps. I've often talked with colleagues who think the finances and logistics of WC drum corps tour schedules at some point will have to "give" and make it impossible to continue as-is. WGI thrives partly because of its huge scholastic base, but also because independent groups have minimal travel and housing logistics, and thus can compete at a much smaller budget. It would make sense that for summer drum corps to minimize costs & logistics (if needed some day) something closer to the WGI Independent model would be beneficial. The costs for members are eve significantly less. To march in Pulse Percussion, it costs between $1500-1800; to march in comparatively same proximity drum corps Pacific Crest, it costs roughly $3000, and I'm not sure if that PC cost includes camps. EVERYONE's costs might be more viable if drum corps moved to a model similar to WGI

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WGI Percussion is definitely not "ALL about the Visual." I think Music is more of the sheets than visual, and music is the reason some visual/effect-heavy groups (like Aimachi) don't max out the sheets/place higher

agree. 60% of the score is music, and commentary pretty much skews that way.

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What's sort of your thing: that you believe/agree with Stu that WGI is all about visual and your disappointed with this inclusion of winds? If that's case I think at the very least we should wait & see before judging what WGI Winds will be like. WGI Percussion is definitely NOT all about visual, and IIRC Music is weighted more than visual. Groups who are strong visually and in effect but weak in music don't succeed: I would argue the opposite, actually. In 2010 Pulse won WGI Independent World with an incredibly clean music performance, beating out Rhythm X who had a much stronger visual package but dirtier finals run musically.

The 'shame' I was refering to was the specific non-allowance for a live musical ensemble to accompany a Winter 'Guard' performance; and this non-allowance fits into the belief structure that Winter 'Guard' is all about the visual; and that Winter 'Guard' has thus religated the musical aspect over to being nothing more than a mere background recording. Again, disallowing a live small jazz combo to accompany a Winter 'Guard' show is what I find to be a shame.

And as for the influence this mindset is having on other marching activities: There is no denying, without being obtuse, that while Winter Drum Line scoring may still be 60% on the musical side, what has been and is happening is that those with the All about Visual belief structure within the realm of Winter 'Guard' are having more and more design influence in the realm of both Winter Drum Line and DCI show designs.

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It could be supporting Sound Sport, right? I mean Sound Sport is mostly a summer thing, while WGI is a winter/spring thing. Wouldn't it make sense for this to basically make all-year music ensemble type thing? Think about it:

* Fall = scholastic band, and/or design & rehearsal camps for independent wind groups

* Wing/Spring = WGI season where wind groups would compete & refine their show

* Summer = Sound Sport, where wind groups can continue to tweak, refine, or even change their show

Seems like a great idea, even if it's just taken as a sole WGI activity and discounting any relation to DCI's Sound Sport. As a HS music teacher I would maybe wonder if this would conflict with festival season (which starts in Jan. with beginning to rehearse music, and festival performances begin in mid/late February and last until early/mid April for my HS & HS's in my district), but as of right now this doesn't seem to be an issue for our students. I think it's great, and will be curious to see how this pans out over the next few years. Some local circuits have tried the winter indoor wind/brass ensembles before with little interest. Maybe WGI backing it (and working in concert with DCI's Sound Sport, even obliquely) will help foster this activity

Right, it does seem like a great idea*!

*See the post I made that was later than this post that you're responding to.

I think it could be complementary.

Good thing these different circuits are playing nice and staying in their respective seasons. If DCI tries to go into the Winter or WGI tries to go into the summer, then it would be competition.

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The 'shame' I was refering to was the specific non-allowance for a live musical ensemble to accompany a Winter 'Guard' performance; and this non-allowance fits into the belief structure that Winter 'Guard' is all about the visual; and that Winter 'Guard' has thus religated the musical aspect over to being nothing more than a mere background recording. Again, disallowing a live small jazz combo to accompany a Winter 'Guard' show is what I find to be a shame.

And as for the influence this mindset is having on other marching activities: There is no denying, without being obtuse, that while Winter Drum Line scoring may still be 60% on the musical side, what has been and is happening is that those with the All about Visual belief structure within the realm of Winter 'Guard' are having more and more design influence in the realm of both Winter Drum Line and DCI show designs.

You think it is a problem that the indoor color guard activity is all about the visual??? :blink:

What am I missing in the above?

If you go way back to the 60's, winter guard used drumlines. My GSC corps had a winter guard, and we used to play for them. But that was just to keep time; there was no music judging component at all. I think most of what we played was just street beats and stuff like that.

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You think it is a problem that the indoor color guard activity is all about the visual??? :blink:

What am I missing in the above?

If you go way back to the 60's, winter guard used drumlines. My GSC corps had a winter guard, and we used to play for them. But that was just to keep time; there was no music judging component at all. I think most of what we played was just street beats and stuff like that.

I did not say that the philosophy of ‘it is All about the Visual’ is a problem with Winter Guard. I said that the problem is that the philosophy is ever increasing in the other forms of the marching arts because it is being heavily pushed by those who believe that 'all' marching arts should be All about the Visual. But my main point was this: What harm is there in allowing a non-judged small rock band, jazz combo, vocal quartet, etc… to perform live music on a side stage for a winter guard? It would be a great outlet for the performers of those types of musical ensembles; since they would not be judged Winter Guard would still be All about the Visual; there would be no more possibility of electrical problems than what currently exists with the potential of malfunctioning CD players or corrupted Mp3 files; there would be no more of a set-up tear-down issue than what we already have with props; the permission to perform and sync issues of copyrighted music would still be the same as they are now; ad infinitum…

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When we first marched winter guard in 1968 it was with our own cadence, our boots, swish of the flag, click click click of the rifle and the captain's commands. At the end of the performance there was applause; prior to the next guard there was silence. A year or two later we had a snare, tenor or triple drummer and followed his cadence. The drummer had to be good because all of our guard movements were precise. If he deviated his cadence, we would have to adjust and during the adjustment the tic system would negated us. Recovery or improvisation was not rewarded.

A few years later we used cassette players (I still have my Marantz) and huge speakers to play music while we marched, lunged and did a bit of footwork. I remember performing at a winter guard contest in 1977 with jazz slippers, clothing that stretched and top hats. We felt free! At our winter guard contests in the 1980's we had a drum corps ensemble or dance troupe or instructors' comedy guard or musical group after the first intermission or while the scores were tabulated.

Current day guards need taped/recorded music because presicion and repetition still exists in addition to all the multiple responsibilities in movement and expression. If a guard had to work with a live musical group, each and every performance would be impovisational theatre. I recommend against this concept, however, a WGI winds performance after the first intermission or while the scores are tabulated is delightful :D

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Current day guards need taped/recorded music because presicion and repetition still exists in addition to all the multiple responsibilities in movement and expression. If a guard had to work with a live musical group, each and every performance would be impovisational theatre. I recommend against this concept, however, a WGI winds performance after the first intermission or while the scores are tabulated is delightful :D

SCV tried the live narrator thing a couple of years back with their John Henry show. Meant that every performance was a little bit different, and they had to adjust as the show went on if the timing changed. Very risky concept, as there's so much that can go wrong in a show.

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