WAUNAKEE, Wis. (October 4, 2018) – More than 30 high school bands from across the state will march onto the UW-Whitewater campus on Saturday, October 13 for the 34th annual Wisconsin School Music Association (WSMA) State Marching Band Championships at Forrest Perkins Stadium, starting at 12 p.m. Click here for schedule.
“The WSMA State Marching Band Championships bring thousands of people together, promoting excellence and pride along with a spirit of support and enthusiasm for our marching band youth,” said Laurie Fellenz, WSMA executive director.
The WSMA State Marching Band Championships are divided into four entry classes (A, AA, AAA and AAAA) determined by total school enrollment. Each band is allowed on the field a maximum of 15 minutes (including entry, performance and exit). A panel of eight judges evaluates bands in five areas: music performance, visual performance, general effect, percussion and color guard. Bands receive both a written critique and recorded comments from each judge for their performance. Bands have a variety of entry options. While the majority of bands march in a competitive class, they may also choose Comments Only (no ratings given or announced), Non-Competitive (numbered score is given but not announced) or Festival Class (award divisions I-IV are given similar to WSMA’s renowned Concert Festival rating system). In each competitive class, “A” through “AAAA,” awards for Best Percussion, Best Musical Presentation, Best Visual Presentation and Best Color Guard are presented, in addition to division awards and the top three awards in each class.
At this year’s championships, David Heilman will be officially inducted into the WSMA Marching Band Hall of Fame, which is intended to recognize the contributions made by individuals to the marching activity in Wisconsin. Heilman has been one of the leading voices in the promotion of music education and marching in the state of Wisconsin for over 40 years. As a member of the initial planning committee, Heilman was a major contributor to the first WSMA State Marching Band Championships held in 1985. He has been the cornerstone of the program serving as Committee Chairman every year since its inception. His dedication to the growth of marching in Wisconsin extends past promoting and organizing the State Championships, as his expertise is relied on greatly for the planning of independent marching band shows hosted throughout the state each year.
Family, friends and community members are invited to attend the 2018 WSMA State Marching Band Championships. Tickets are $15 for adults and $8 for students 18 and under, senior citizens and undergraduate college students with valid college ID. Children five and under, free admission. For more information, including post-event results, visit wsmamusic.org.
# # #
Founded in 1932, Wisconsin School Music Association (WSMA) is a non-profit service organization with more than 1,000 member public and private schools. Students from member schools are eligible to participate in WSMA programs, such as District and State Music Festivals, Concert Festivals, State Honors Music Project, State Marching Band Championships and Student Composition Project. WSMA is governed by a board of directors made up of superintendents, principals and other officers from all over the state. WSMA believes music is a basic human need and that all children have the right to experience all that music offers them.