The 2015 Bands of America Grand National Championships got started in a big way Wednesday evening with the annual Indianapolis Marching Band Tournament. This community-wide celebration of pageantry is the kickoff event for the nation’s most prestigious marching band competition.
One of the unique aspects of this event is the Spirit Award, which includes a $1,000.00 check presented to the school whose fans display the most enthusiasm and sportsmanship. This is one contest where cheering for your favorite band can provide the students much more than just moral support. Crispus Attucks High School was named the Spirit Award winner with a very large and supportive throng of boosters cheering them on.
Sweeping all captions in the Corps-style division, Arsenal Technical HS brought the pomp and festivity of a Chinese New Year’s parade, complete with a dragon of band members snaking across the field. Second place Emmerich Manual HS gave us a thrilling high-seas adventure set to music of “Pirates of the Caribbean,” with the chills and thrills of the iconic movie franchise on a football field.
Show-style winner Broad Ripple Magnet HS came through at crunch time with “The Wide World of Sports,” which paid tribute to the most popular types of sports in our country. With “Hip Hop Through Time,” runner-up Crispus Attucks Magnet HS took us on a journey through the evolution of their favorite type of music.
Other bands included Arlington Community HS, who rejoined us after an absence of several years. John Marshall Community HS played contemporary chart-toppers, and Northwest Community HS closed with a red hot version of Iggy Azalea’s “Fancy.” Shortridge HS pounded out challenging cadences with their ten-member drumline. George Washington Community HS showed us what could be done with only four wind players, and Key Learning Community treated us to the sounds of Bruno Mars.
The quest for the Eagle starts in earnest on Thursday, as ninety-five outstanding bands from coast to coast in the continental United States, Alaska, and Hawaii will compete in Prelims. The highest placing bands will advance to Saturday morning’s Semi Finals competition, with the top 12 bands coming back to the main event, Saturday night’s spectacular Grand National Finals.
Tickets are still available for all performances. We invite you to join us in person at Lucas Oil Stadium, via the live webcast available at musicforall.org, or through our interactive blog covering the action as it happens. Let’s rise together and support these future leaders as they give it their all over the next three days. Go for it! Break ranks!