Thursday, November 11, 2010
Today, the journey of 45 Historically Black College and University (HBCU) Marching Bands has reached its destination. It all began in late summer when these HBCUs took that first high step and that first rehearsal where increasingly challenging drills and compositions were tested to develop the most dynamic, spirited halftime performances of the fall season. Notoriety is earned today by SC State as it joins the ranks of the top eight HBCU marching bands selected to perform at the 2011 Honda Battle of the Bands (HBOB) Invitational Showcase:
Virginia State University “Marching Trojan Explosion” (Central Intercollegiate Athletic Association)
South Carolina State University “Marching 101” (Mid-Eastern Athletic Conference)
Albany State University “Marching Rams Show Band” (Southern Intercollegiate Athletic Conference)
Jackson State University “Sonic Boom of the South” (Southwestern Athletic Conference)
Bethune Cookman University “Marching Wildcats” (Mid-Eastern Athletic Conference)
Clark Atlanta University “Mighty Marching Panthers” (Southern Intercollegiate Athletic Conference)
Winston-Salem State University “Red Sea of Sound” (Central Intercollegiate Athletic Association)
Tennessee State University “Aristocrat of Bands” (Ohio Valley Conference)
SC State University will be represented among the 2,000 student-musicians that make up these bands, that have staked their claims to being among the elite in the country and will take the stage to prove their mettle on Jan. 29, 2011 at the Georgia Dome in Atlanta. Each band will have the opportunity to perform for 12 minutes and showcase their musical skills, dancing talents and creativity.
Marking its ninth year, the Honda Battle of the Bands is the only national scholarship program that highlights music education as an important facet of HBCU heritage and culture. As one of the eight winning band programs chosen to participate in this year’s Invitational Showcase, SC State will be awarded $20,000 by American Honda for its music program, in addition to the $1,000 grant they received for participation in the pre-qualifying Celebration Tour. Through this program, American Honda annually awards a total of $205,000 in scholarships to HBCU music programs. Since the program’s inception, an excess of $1 million in grant money has been bestowed to black colleges.
“The Honda Battle of the Bands Invitational Showcase is about more than what happens on the field at the Georgia Dome on show day,” said Marc Burt, senior manager, Office of Inclusion and Diversity for American Honda. “This event is about celebrating the abilities and brilliance of young people coming out of the nation’s black colleges. The discipline and drive these student-musicians exhibit both on and off the field are phenomenal, and Honda is pleased to be able to contribute to the music education programs that help foster the artistic and academic growth of these students.”
The Selection Process
The eight HBOB Invitational Showcase bands were selected from a group of 45 bands from all regions of the United States. HBCU presidents, band directors and fans voted for their favorite bands based on showmanship, musicianship and fan interaction. Online fan votes accounted for one third (1/3) of the selection criteria, with band directors’ and school presidents’ votes accounting for the remaining two thirds. Band directors and school presidents are not allowed to vote for their own institutions.
The Fox Music Experience
The Fox Music Experience, a unique HBCU music internship program, is also back for its fourth year of presentation. The Fox Music Experience works in collaboration with the Honda Battle of the Bands to help expose black college student-musicians to the broader world of music and entertainment. The program, which was introduced four years ago, permits one lucky Invitational Showcase student musician the opportunity to spend the summer working on the Twentieth Century Fox studio lot in Los Angeles, being immersed in the inner workings of film and television music production. The winning student is selected by popular online vote, and band fans can visit www.HondaBattleoftheBands.com now, through January 14, 2011, to cast a vote for their favorite intern candidate.
The Honda Battle of the Bands web site (www.HondaBattleoftheBands.com) is the official online destination for all HBOB information, including Invitational Showcase updates, biographical information on the eight Showcase bands, information on the Fox Music Experience summer internship program, press materials and credentials, broadcast quality footage from last year’s performances and downloadable high resolution photos for media use and distribution. Group and individual tickets to this highly anticipated family event are on sale now and can be purchased for $10 to $12 by visiting www.HondaBattleoftheBands.com, through Ticketmaster or via the Georgia Dome box-office. For more information about the program, please visit www.HondaBattleoftheBands.com.
American Honda Motor Co., Inc., was founded in 1959 as the U.S. sales and marketing subsidiary of Honda Motor Co., Ltd. Honda currently produces automobiles, motorcycles, all-terrain vehicles, lawn mowers and engines at its nine major U.S. manufacturing operations, using domestic and globally sourced parts. Honda’s long-standing commitment to the support and success of the nation’s Historically Black Colleges and Universities began more than 20 years ago with the establishment of the Honda Campus All-Star Challenge, a program designed to showcase the academic gifts and prowess of HBCU students. American Honda established Honda Battle of the Bands nine years ago as an effort to support HBCU music programs.
About SC State University
Founded in 1896 as a land grant institution with a mission of providing service to the citizens of the state, South Carolina State University has evolved from a small teachers’ college into a major University center of learning and research. Located in Orangeburg, S.C., with a student population of some 4,500, South Carolina State offers more than 50 different fields of study on the undergraduate and graduate levels. South Carolina State University is accredited by the Southern Association of Colleges and Schools and is a member of the Council of Graduate Schools.