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About RyanB

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  • Birthday 09/10/1984

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  1. When I look at a member profile and click "find posts by this member," I find myself at an error page. Is this a "me" problem or a site problem? -Ryan
  2. Dissapointed

    I post the following in regard to Saturday's adjudication, not the work of any of the dedicated students that performed on that field.... If the adjudication was based on reputation: Lake Park would have been higher than 4th. Naperville North would have been lower than 2nd. Waubonsie Valley and VJA would have made finals. WWS may have been higher than 8th. I could go on for quite a bit... Fact of the matter is that many of us were suprised by what happened on Saturday. If the scores came out as we had expected, then you could say that the scoring was based upon the different ensembles' reputations. I disagree. Does that mean I agree wholeheartedly with the numbers that those individuals scribbled out? That's probably a conversation you and I should have one on one. In finals, six judges had MC at 1st, three had them at 2nd, and one had them at 3rd. That tells me that four people agreed with you--they should not have won (at least a specific caption) based upon their performance that night. On the flip side, a majority of the adjudicators felt that they performed better than the other groups that were competing. So Marian needs work before their trek to Indy--I'll buy that. This is early in their season, and they are notorious for cleaning up AFTER the ISU competition. Did I see feet that needed work out of that group? Yes. And I saw feet that needed work in EVERY performance I watched on Saturday. Either way, Marian Catholic is a first rate ensemble and a first rate organization. First rate groups often win state--period. Aside from that, I did not get to see as many bands as I would have liked this weekend, but there wasn't a single performance that I saw that should not invoke a sense pride in the hearts of the performers. I saw many great things Saturday, and there should be thousands of high school students with their heads held high this week. Congrats to all on marching and playing your butts off. -Ryan
  3. Lake Park

    As a member of that staff, I can assure you that there has been no change in show design approach--A coincidence between your personal taste and the years we have produced certain shows, maybe. Some years just happen to be more successful than others, but no one has ever said "Let's put together this kind of show because we are going to BOA this year." That would be like saying "Let's make a greater investment in the kids this year because we're going to a bigger competition." The students are the prize any year regardless of where they perform, and to change any approach, design or otherwise, would be in stark contrast with the educational objectives we strive to meet within that program. -RB
  4. Lake Park

    Heh, cool. The alternating "involved" vs. "simple" show designs probably owe to the fact that they only attend BOA events every other year, so they put even more time and effort into those shows. Thanks for the summaries! In-your-face and innovative may not always come across in September. I would imagine that it is safe to say that every band at the Joust (or Pontiac or anywhere else this weekend) has a few more tricks to pull from up their sleeves between now and the end of the year. At VJA, we have a pretty good idea (as does every other band, I'm sure) as to where we are now and where we want to be. (We still have music to put on the field, lots to clean, and elements to add...) If you haven't guessed, I work at VJA, and the main reason I am posting is to respond to the thought of us approaching BOA and "non-BOA" years differently. I am unable to recall changing our objectives or thought processes from year to year in anticipation for what performances were in our planned lineup. This season, for the first time in my recollection (even before my time within the organization), VJA will be attending BOA events in two consecutive yearsin a row. While Grand Nats is not on our calendar in 2005, we are very much looking forward to the St. Louis Super Regional in October. That aside, know that our students should and can expect the same dedication and careful planning and preparation in all that we do, regardless of who sees us each year and where we are headed. Congrats to all on a lot of great things happening at the Joust on Saturday... Best wishes for a musically fulfilling season! -RB
  5. change over the years

    The following is my opinion only, not fact... There may even be other alumni reading this that disagree--- (respond away, Woody!) In general, I think the quality of groups has climbed recently. I was a L-W freshman in 1998, and marching band is practically a different activity now than it was then (within reason). The scores we earned in '98 are far more flattering than that same show would yield today. It is also my opinion that the bigger festivals like BOA and ISU were a hair less competitive back then. (I know I sound like a grandparent; it was only 7 seasons ago!) What used to make finals in those places then may not stand a chance today... As far as the MK sound of the mid-late '90s, they could sure play! On the other hand, the marching was not quite as strong as you saw in '99, '00, and '01. It wasn't deficient by any means, but the focus was definitely musical. The other reason you notice a difference in sound is the arranging style. The voicing and scoring those years was far more flattering than today's norm. There was much more full ensemble writing and less intricate parts, but the group's power made up for that. Less intricate does not mean easier to play, but it may mean easier to put together. Groups like LP, Prospect, and Marian today have instrumental features that are typically more exposed---(you don't hear as many crazy 16th note passages out of the LW bands of old--they achieved effect differently). Don't get me wrong, I'm not taking away any credit from either approach... I love listening to those older shows myself. They really did play well. On a side note, if you listen to around '95 and '96, that is about the time when the drumline and pit peaked. That line has always been solid (and still is), even in off years. Back before my time even, though, they really had some chops... (and, again, their writing was pretty good, too) Well, I just rambled a ton, so I'll shut up---again, this is just my take, and what do I know?
  6. Biggest Rivalry

    PeterF.net was the page that your director came across... Yes, many people got a slap on the wrist for that one... It wasn't the first time (or worst instance) a message board created problems in the marching band world, though...
  7. Biggest Rivalry

    Whoa.... take a deep breath.... I'd have to agree, everyone speculates from time to time, and I would be lying if I said that I didn't or that I don't still, but where I disagree with you is that my thoughts have always been and will always be just my thoughts. I would never post them on the internet or affiliate them with any program. It's unfortunate, but with an ID that has LWCMK in it, your thoughts get immediately plastered to a group that I care very much about, and I'm certain that not all 196 of you speculate the exact same way. That's not to say I am judging your band----our band----on what you have posted, but then again, I'm not the only person who reads these things---as a matter of fact, a friend of mine pointed this out to me because it bothered him so much. I try to stay as far from these things as possible. I recall Eric Wellman and Monica Schmitt happening upon a page like this quite recently, and there were serious consequences for the members of the group that posted negative things about other bands. Just a caution. Finally, I don't have a "beef" with anyone. I sincerely applaud your enthusiasm for your group; I just don't now that I approve of the way you show it. I trust that your intent is in the right place, but we teach the student leadership team in the band that I work with that PERCEPTION is reality.... Intention is not. I'm glad that your intent is in the right place--just do me a favor and reread each of your posts before clicking "add reply," and think about how EVERY member of your audience could PERCIEVE your thoughts. i.e. consider posting "perhaps the reason that show scored so well is because the closer was so strong--the rest of it wasn't my favorite" as opposed to " ya know it was only the closer that did it for us that year" (lots of great people put a lot of hard work into a pretty hot program for you to negate it like that) So no, I don't hate you, nor do I have any desire to "kill" you... I have bigger things on my mind---like regionals and nationals... I'm sure you do, too. Just continue to strive for excellence and you will be fine. I saw an internet message board tear apart a band once, and I'm just trying to ensure you don't follow the same path. Furthermore, I'd advise you not to go through life seeking the approval of specific individuals---if I did hate you, that's fine, move on, do something more important with your time. As a music educator, I would suggest pulling that trumpet out for a practice session to burn off any stress this message board has caused. Finally, congratulations to you, as well as many of the readers of this board, on one or two excellent performances at ISU last night. I hope you are proud of your hard work and accomplishments. R
  8. Biggest Rivalry

    Two final missed thoughts: First, I apologize for the length of my post--- and... As I preach about respecting your own history, I might admit myself that though I know the first Smith era and the Wellman era very well, I could not begin to accurately describe Mr. Irvin's or Mr. Kummer's work. I must say, however, that they have both done incredible things for music education in district 210, the state of Illinois and elsewhere.
  9. Biggest Rivalry

    I was a part of the LW Band during those days... Someone posted that at one point we grew to be 300+ people. Let's say that that isn't entirely true (we maxed out at just under 260 in 2000). 1999 was the year that the Marching Knights were named Grand Champion at ISU, and it wasn't due to a "cool" closer. It wasn't due to a cool anything, as a matter of fact. ISU always brings in a group of very respected and knowlegeable adjudicators from around the country, and though I may not have said this during my high school days, they do a pretty good job of evaluating the many many bands they see in 14 hours. In order for that band to have scored how they did, they had to march and play their butts off--plain and simple (and we did). Lake Park has a longstanding tradition of excellence: They move well; they play well. They work just as hard as every other band out there, and the years they were crowned in finals were just as deserving as any other band any other year. Be careful to judge what you see of that program as well--most of them wish for the best things for everyone who surrounds them, and I hope the favor will always be returned. Someone also mentioned in a post somewhere that the LW Bands are in the top 10 nationally. I would be proud to say that my alma mater had achieved such a high level of performance, however the highest any LW band scored at a national competition was 18th in 1998. The activity has evolved so much since then that I am afraid even a combined group would struggle to score as high today. I love and support what you are doing, but top 10 is a bit out of your league, at least right now. I might also caution you to discuss LW history if you lack familiarity. Having served as a LW drum major before and after the split, I can tell you that the Marching Knights are not now what they used to be. Many traditions still stand, and I recognize pieces of my own history in your performances today, but to talk about (criticize, even?) the show that "won state" without having been on that field is a bold move. I applaud you for your enthusiasm about your band's history, but I ask that you be more careful in acquiring your facts. If you are looking for some information that I can share, let me know. On a final note, I know that the band that I work with these days is striving to move and play well this weekend. If we score well, excellent, if not, we better have had a good show anyway. I hope the same is true for you, and I always wish the Knights (at LW and Prospect), Griffins, Lancers, Spartans, and all of the other Illinois bands the very best in achieving your own edition of excellence... Siam! RB rbudzins@iwu.edu