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garfield

DCI A/I and Judging

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Up until the mid 80’s, two circuits in Massachusetts, CYO and Eastern MA had bands, drum corps, and drill teams, and the same music sheets were used by bands and drum corps and the same m&m and GE sheets for all three. I can recall going to high school band competitions years later and the judges were all the familiar names from the drum corps competitions. I don’t follow high school band competitions as closely as I do DCI, so I don’t know how the sheets differ, but I don’t think we’ll see huge changes in who judges or how they judge.

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54 minutes ago, Glenn426 said:

Well I think at least for the first year (2021), with the way the proposal is written they are saying that WW elements would be judged the same way that the Electronic Violin was judged in BD's show last year. It is a Musical Instrument being performed by a musician but it is treated the same way a voiceover is. Not judged on its musical or technical ability but how it effects/compliments the Visual or Musical presentation of the show.

 

Going forward the sheets have to carefully thought over, For the Music captions, will they reword the Field Brass Judge to be the Wind Judge? For their considerations to include the performance of the WW Ensemble as well as the Brass Ensemble. 

I think the Key point is that the Music judges be made clear that a corps should not be penalized if they don't present enough WoodWind Color in their presentation. As it is not specifically stated as a requirement on the sheets. Although from a GE Music standpoint the wide variety and contrast of musical ideas, emotion, and presentations is always thought of as a plus in that Caption.

So 100% DCI, through its Judging and steering committees will decide how much a corps is required to present and incorporate the WW's into their program.

We'll Find out if the true intent of this rule is to increase the Corps Size limit to 200+ or not by how much weight they put on the WW Color to their judging sheets.

Regarding the bolded portions:  I seem to remember similar statements/comments/indications about any key brass, electronics, amplification...in essence, "no one is required to incorporate/implement XYZ"

which inevitably turned into the drum corps equivalent of 

"monkey do, other monkeys see, other monkeys do (or do not, at their peril), wash, rinse, repeat"

Grains of salt and tongue/cheek interactions liberally applied.

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I would watch what the Blue Devils do the first year. They will utilize WW to maximize their score and then everyone else will do the same the following year. I'm not BD hating, they're kinda like the Patriots and know how to win. Except this year, sorry Brady, not sorry.

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59 minutes ago, gak27 said:

Regarding the bolded portions:  I seem to remember similar statements/comments/indications about any key brass, electronics, amplification...in essence, "no one is required to incorporate/implement XYZ"

 

there were also corps that said "even if this proposal gets passed, we'll never use amps/electronics", and then used amps and electronics almost immediately afterward. 

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solo vocalists for ballads and such over the past several years.  how were they factored into scoring? 

how does a soloists solo becoming a huge mess of pops and distortion and crazy dynamics due to A&E being fubar get scored?

people chime in with all sorts of things regarding questions like these, but nobody ever seems to actually know the answer.  it's because the rubrics dci uses are stupid, lol. 

just don't pay attention to scores, and enjoy what you can.  that's my advice.  

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One thing I hope that gets discussed when they consider judging and adding A/I is the potential this will further the gap between the corps at the top with funds to provide professional-level, highly engineered electronic support.  I see woodwinds and electronics going hand-in-hand, as woodwinds would be at the mercy of amps and audio processing to be heard in the context of DCI.  Corps with deep pockets and super fancy audio rigs will have a HUGE competitive advantage over those corps just trying to scrape enough funds to get down the road.  The disparity is already huge.  Look at the A/E productions of the bottom of the World Class vs. the top.  The bottom tier have basically garage band setups and the top have fully professional, Broadway-style A/E rigs.  Definitely NOT apples to apples and I find it silly that they are even judged against one another in a competitive manner.  

If the A/I rules passes, I envision the top corps using woodwinds will mic every one of them, and run them through a gamut of sweetening studio effects, as is already done for most brass soloists (reverb/delay/chorusing/compression/etc).  Those corps with the financial means to provide professional-level live sounds rigs will have a gigantic advantage over all the others- they already do since there seems to really be no limit when it comes to A/E and the use of professional audio engineering, effects, etc.  Woodwinds widens the gap and competitive advantage even more.

DCI can steer the activity in any direction it chooses simply by giving credit on the judging sheets and awarding corps doing whatever new thing it wants them to do.  Seems if they choose to give scoring preference to woodwind use (which they surely will, if rules change) then the "haves" of the activity will just have an even bigger advantage then they already do.  Corps already seem to have so many added expenses for the "extra" stuff now (giant props, a separate line of trombones for the requisite trombone feature and solo, A/E rigs, etc... since BD was successful with strings and a sousaphone we better figure those will now become requisite, too, etc etc).  The more extra stuff is added, the sillier it seems to judge it and make this a "competition."

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18 minutes ago, Lance said:

there were also corps that said "even if this proposal gets passed, we'll never use amps/electronics", and then used amps and electronics almost immediately afterward. 

or plugging in midseason so not competing with one hand tied behind their back

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did they  justify abandoning their ideals by portraying themselves as victims?

not that i saw. 

that was something the crazies on here and ramd did. 

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2 hours ago, cixelsyd said:

This clarifies something in my mind, though.

Previously, I made the mistake of saying that I might consider a permanent woodwinds-as-accessory-only policy.  I now see that the manipulations of woodwind proponents will never allow such a policy to stand.  So my mind is made up.  If the "Any Instrument Policy" proposal, currently a long-shot, were to somehow pass after all, then 2020 would be my farewell season for DCI support.

Does this mean your very cool screen name on DCP will be available beginning in 2021?

😀

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4 hours ago, garfield said:

A typical band director now has to go through a battery of testing and experience assignments to judge drum corps the "DCI Way" specifically because the instrumentation is different than most band programs.

Only in the Wind / Brass section.  Drums, Guard and Visual are all the same (ish).  And I don't know how many circuits currently use DCI's GE guidelines anyways; I don't think this will have any effect.

Mike

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