Downingtown to host music competition
‘Cavalcade of Bands’ on Saturday will feature more than 12 marching band performances
DOWNINGTOWN >> This competition is all about the halftime show.
Downingtown Music Parents Association announced it will host the “Cavalcade of Bands” marching band competition at Downingtown West High School at Kottmeyer Stadium at 445 Manor Avenue on Saturday, Sept. 24. The marching bands will perform to earn regional recognition for excellence in musical performance, marching precision, flag/guard performance and drumline.
As the hosts, Downingtown East and West High School bands will perform in exhibition. Both school bands will perform its half-time show without being judged for the competition. In addition to the dozen high school performances, Shippensburg University and Boston College both will perform its college-level show to entertain the audience.
According to event organizers, the following schools will perform in addition to East and West: Coatesville; Unionville; Kennett; Marple Newtown; Garnet Valley; Wissahickon; Upper Merion; Bridgeton; Hazleton; Penns Grove; and American.
The show will begin at 6 p.m. with the Downingtown East and West High School marching bands combining its more than 310 students to play the National Anthem. The gates open at 4:30 p.m.
West Band Director Edward Otto, an alumnus of the Downingtown music program, encourages former band members to come to support the event and to meet up with old high school friends.
“This cavalcade event is such a terrific community builder for Downingtown,” Otto said. “So many area residents have been a part Downingtown’s tremendous music program, we love that the event creates an opportunity for them to come back to enjoy a night of award-winning music and to see the bands under the stadium lights.”
The Music Parents Association members noted that despite research showing the importance of music performance for cognitive and social development, music programs nationwide have been cut by school boards and school districts. The association said it has “tried to fill the financial gap as much as possible” in the Downingtown area.
“The Music Parents Association represents the commitment of all the music parents – band, orchestra, and chorus - from all three high schools,” MPA President Robin McMillen stated in a news release about West, East and the STEM Academy. “The board is not always able to fund the music program at a consistent level from year to year. Fundraising efforts like this Cavalcade of Bands event help support all the music programs where the district funding leaves off. Over the years, we have been able to purchase uniforms and risers for the choral program, repair or replace instruments for band and orchestra students, and bring in some really unique program enhancements that would not have been possible otherwise. In addition to being a community event, the cavalcade is a key fundraiser for the MPA.”
Tickets for the Cavalcade of Bands are available at East, West or STEM. Tickets are $8 for adults and $5 for children under 12 prior to the event; senior citizens and military are discounted prices; tickets at the gate on Saturday are $10 for adults and $7 for children. The concession stand will be open for hamburgers, hot dogs, French fries, snacks and drinks.
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Downingtown Music Parents Association announced it will host the Cavalcade of Bands marching band competition at Downingtown West High School Kottmeyer Stadium on Saturday, Sept. 24.