Alabama State Marching Band Championship

The following information pertains to the Alabama State Marching Band Championship hosted at Muscle Shoals High School, Saturday November 3rd.  I have cut and pasted some details about judging, scoring, and awards below, as it will be quite different from other contests and you should know how this contest will work differently.  Other state championships tend to follow more closely BOA (Bands of America) methods of evaluation.  There will be more judges (6 for “band” + 1 for each of the auxiliaries = 9 total), with the Individual Music Performance and Individual Visual Performance judges on the track/field assessing the individual performance of students – something new to many of our students.  (

Judging and awards

The ASMC is utilizing caption judging sheets that can be found on our website  The Alabama State Championship will weight Music captions 60% and Visual captions 40% of the overall score.  Each band classification will have the following awards: High General Effect (Music and Visual effect), High Music (Music Effect, Ensemble music, Individual music), High Visual (Visual Effect, Visual Ensemble, Visual individual), BIC (Best in Class) Color Guard, BIC drum major, BIC Percussion, and placement awards (1st, 2nd, 3rd).   Each Placement will receive a trophy with the top three placements being the largest resembling the athletic state championship trophies.  The 3 music caption sheets will sample woodwinds, brass and percussion and the 3 visual caption sheets will sample the auxiliaries.  The drum major, percussion, and color guard scores DO NOT average into the overall band score.  Majorettes and dance lines will fall under the color guard caption.  The judges will be trained to follow the rubric and place the band score within one of 5 boxes.  (See judge sheets and rubrics, available on the website.)  Because this is the end of the marching season, the rubric numbers have been skewed to the high end.  This is common practice by many competitive based organizations and we have adopted it as well.  

The awards ceremony will begin at 9:15 pm.  This will be a DRUM MAJOR ONLY RETREAT.  Drum majors will need to assemble under the scoreboard in the east end zone at 9:00 pm in performance order.  The announcer will read each band’s name in order of performance.  Drum majors will march onto the field as they are called to their designated area.  There will be an adult to help them.  During the award ceremony, the announcer will read scores from smallest to largest classifications beginning with the BIC (Best in Class) awards, high GE, Music, and Visual awards.  Then, the Announcer will go back to the smallest classification and announce the placement awards.  The announcement will go as follows; In 4th place, with a score of 80.5……80.5…. The Marching Dragons from Dragon Cave High School!  

BHSMB Schedule:

*Attached is a schedule of the entire day so you can see who else is competing and who is in our 6A class.  Band classification at this contest is based on the school size (pertaining to AHSAA – athletic governing body), not the band size (which is typically based on winds +/- percussion).

11:00 AM – Eat a good healthy lunch and HYDRATE (when the weather cools off, we usually neglect our hydration)

12:00 PM – Call time for trailer load

1:00 – Depart BHS

3:00 – Arrival 

3:15 – Dinner – I am currently working with MSHS Band Parents to coordinate 1 or 2 dinner options ($5 pizza (2 slices) & drink will be at least one).  I will take an initial tally by the end of the week and need to collect $$ Monday.  As always, bringing your own meal is always an option.  If a student doesn’t pay ahead of time, they will not be able to pay on the spot since MSHS Band Parents will be ordering only what we tally.  Therefore, if a student doesn’t pay Monday with me, he/she will need to bring their own meal.  We will eat in their cafeteria.

4:15 – Unload & Dress

5:00 – Physical Warm-Up

5:50 – Official Warm-Up

6:25 – Leave Warm-Up, travel to stadium

6:40 – BHSMB puts on their best performance ever!

7:00 – Return to trailer to change and load

*It will be quite cold after our performance so students need to be prepared to change in to warm clothes for the cold.  If possible, we encourage students to wear Buckhorn blue items.

7:30 – Snack bags and water

8:00 – Travel to stadium to observe final bands / visit shirt vendors, etc.

9:15 – Awards Ceremony (Drum Major only)

~10:15 – Load buses & Depart MSHS for home

~12:30 – 1:00 AM – Arrive at BHS (Remind text ETAs will be sent)

*As always, students will unload and be dismissed after we arrive back at school

*Students may bring a screw top drink for the bus ride, clean snacks, a pillow and a blanket.