2012 WGI Indianapolis Color Guard Regional Prelims Review
This post will update after each performance.
Scholastic Regional A:
1st, 73.1 – Carmel HS – Not easy being the first guard of the 2012 regional season. Nice unison flag work mid show. A simply designed show with just one set of flags and rifles, plus lots of body work. Once the guard gets more performance experience and works on their timing, this will be a great show.
2nd, 68.8 – Lake Park HS: “Cello Suite” – Unique tarp design. I recognize the music but can’t remember the title. Nice equipment work for the first regional of the year. Love the burnt orange flags midway through the show. Still some flag work to be written near the end of the show. This guard was easy to perform.
Independent Regional A:
1st, 62.1- Steperettes Cadets: “Proud Mary” – One kid playing bass at the front of the stage. Using Tina Turner’s version of the song. Middle school kids from the looks of it. Nice equipment work for a group this young. Nice rifle toss/exchange midway through the show. It will be fun to see this group once they’ve cleaned the show up.
Eastern HS: “Acceptance” – Dance work to start the show, now a solo flag with strong technique. Great silks. Flag work design could be a little more dynamic but is clean. One of the members takes over the song’s vocal, hard to hear from the back of the stage. Rest of the guard joins in, but still lacks impacts, especially once the recorded vocal track returns. I think the guard could be challenged more by the design team.
Walled Lake Central HS – Small benches are the prop for this show. Dynamic body work at the start of the show. Equipment work by the guard is also strong, starting with a sharp ripple rifle toss. The guard uses the floor very effectively, moving focus throughout the show. The energy is high from start to finish and the guard pulls you into the show. Great performance!
North Royalton HS: “Thievery” – Guard is all wearing black masks like thieves. Some are holding “stolen” items as props. Rifles do some nice one handed work while holding the purses. Flag work is pretty clean. Flag designs throughout the show are very eye catching. Solo flag nails a great toss. Nice touch by the guard hiding from the “cops” under the tarp to finish the show.
Columbus North HS: “A Portrait Of You” – Dance to start the show, leading to sabres, flags, and rest still dancing. Getting more energy from the performance midway through. Equipment work is strong. I just got pulled in by a member totally rocking her flag work.
Lafayette Jefferson HS – Interesting hair style. Guard starts with small gold ball props. I have no idea what word the announcer used for the show theme. Strange vocal arrangement of Bolero. Guard now on standard equipment. Lots of sabre and rifle work, difficult and leading to more drops than usual. This is a show which the crowd will scratch their heads over but, if performed powerfully and cleanly, will get the crowd off their feet, too.
Troy HS: “007″ – Performamce is full of energy. Tosses and catches are very deliberate and almost violent in their nature. Body movement is frenetic and well defined. Interesting use of the Swan Lake theme. All of the guard has their game face on. Some guard members look like they have some movement not written yet. Weird fade out of music at the end. The show feels like it’s not finished but will be awesome once all the pieces are in place.
Westfield HS: “Fix You” – Second performance of this song, although different version. The design is nice but I could use more energy, especially considering how subdued this song is. Three wheeled props display different photos and messages throughout the show. Love these purple and black silks. Nice full guard flag work. I think the guard just needs to project their performance more, add some more energy, and they’ll really shine.
Rich woods HS: “The Luckiest” – Our wedding song! Nice mirrored flag work, front line on red flags, back on cream. Solo sabre doing some great work mid floor. Rifles having a tough time. Guard all on the cream flags except for a soloist on red. Great solo toss! Flag work in general is the strength of this group.
Zionsville Community HS: “It’s Not All Black & White” – Another guard with stools. Show starts in the back. Tarp is quarter unfolded. Strong flag work (which are all black and white). Very schizo piano moments on top of Moonlight Sonata. Clean sabre toss and strong flag work so far. A ton of solo tosses, all caught cleanly. As the tarp unfolds, more colors are added to the show. Guard now opening jacket tops off to reveal colored shirts underneath. Strong unison flag work. A total package show.
Decatur HS: “Gallery Of The Gods” – Each guard member steps down from a podium when a god’s name is called. Uniforms are quite Greco-Roman. Also, each member’s flag has their god’s symbol on the corner in the same color as the fringe of their uniform. We arrear to be getting a history lesson on the gods. One of the narrators is W. Morgan Sheppard, though, so that’s OK. Equipment work is basic. New flags now feature the god symbols with the color as background. Dynamic flag feature to close out the show. Do more of that the rest of the show and the crowd will love you.
Scottsburg HS: “Remembered In Stone” – Body movement to start the show. Good energy to start. Flag work is dynamic. Solo rifle toss introduces weapons to the show. Love the sound of a unison rifle catch! Sabres now in use. Unison flag work is very strong. Guard does a lot of work while in motion, across the floor or while dancing. High level of demand for this guard and they execute well.
Waubonsie Valley HS: “Sleepless” – Uniforms are unique. Guard opens either “sleeping” or acting tired. Clock on a wall prop shows it’s late. Solo flag is really working it. Killer silks to start the show. Solo rifle nails her toss, then does it again for good measure. Clock moves forward through the early AM hours throughout the show. Nice flag work from start to finish. Now a full flag feature, very eye catching. Show closes with flag soloists passing their flag along the guard as the rest finally “fall asleep”.
Lake Park HS: “Any Other World” – The floor looks like a UPS warehouse exploded. Love the MIKA soundtrack. Rifle work is clean front and center. Guard uniforms, flags, and clothing around the packing boxes all shades of blue, but now we add purple to the mix. The show seems to be evoke packing up when leaving an ex. Great unison flag toss! Guard is getting into their performance. Crowd liked this performance.
Mascoute HS – Show theme is magic based. Half the guard seems to be there just to move props and mug for the audience when a “magic trick” is performed. Nice equipment work, but it’s not getting me excited. Unison flag work is more interesting. I wanted this show to interest me more.
East Central HS: “Timeline” – High energy flag and rifle work to open. Guard is performing well but the crowd isn’t reacting as much as I’d expect. Nice individual flag work as the guard crosses the floor. I think the show design is strong but the guard may be a little off. Might need a second viewing to be sure.
Blue Horizon: “Somewhere There’s Light” – Solo dancer opens the show, joined by small groups of members until the full guard is dancing. A few members move to rifles, then half the guard. Other half moves to flags. Ripple rifle toss is nailed. Flags are working it. Guard now on all flags. Design of this show isn’t very memorable.
Lexis: “For The Boys” – Bar stools and a mic stand are the props for this performance. Music is from the movie of the same name and starts with Boogie Woogie Bugle Boy. Guard is doing their best Andrews Sisters dance moves. Strong flag and rifle work right up front. Music is high energy and the guard work reflects that. First major applause mid show of the day. Flag doing work with flag and stool. Full flag feature now. Energy dropped a little during the second half but a very good performance overall.
Collage: “Windows To The Soul” – Solo flag surrounded by dancers who quickly move out and get flags of their own. Flags are eye catching shimmering yellow. Soundtrack is two versions of “In Your Eyes” overlayed. Weapons now in use. Nice flag feature across the front of the floor. Rifles in a circle surrounding flags do a great toss to the person next to them. Final flags have a plastic “window” you can see the members through.
Huron Valley Alliance: “Gravity” – Dance to start. Some members now on sabre or flag. Solo sabre and flag each get their moment to shine. All on flags now except for a solo dancer. So far, the solo work is grabbing my attention but not the unit as a whole. Also not sure what the show theme has to do with anything in the show.
SS2: “Nightmare” – Props and guard makeup make me think of zombie chess. With the “flatline” sound and the heartbeat to open the show, I may be right, although those props may be tombstones. Halloween theme as guard is on black flags. Nice unison flag work at the back of the floor. There’s some young kids in this group, but they’re spinning and catching rifles like the dead are after them. Middle of the show loses some of that energy, but then they do a rifle toss that changes my life and brings the intensity back up. Crowd LOVED them.
Integrity: “Memories From The Attic” – dance and sabre work to open the show. Props are covered in white cloth and revealed one by one to be items one would find in an attic. Guard now all on sabre. Work isn’t very demanding yet. Switch to all flags. Work is clean but, again, not very demanding. When on rifle, though, I’m getting more energy from the group. Love the orange flags. Interesting that the group is rarely not broken into smaller groups on different equipment. The show could use the variety in design.
Eastern HS: “How To Build A Puddle” – Three solo dancers get the spotlight to start, then the whole guard dances. Solo sabre tosses elicit crowd responses. Nice flag ripple toss then a solo rifle toss. Strong equipment performance. Very little dance outside of the opening and the end, which surprises me. A good start to the second half of Prelims.
Terre Haute North HS: “Tempted” – Sabre tosses start the show. One sabre in particular is nailing some killer tosses. Guard now split on rifles and flags. Rifles doing a lot more than the flags. Show is definitely written to feature the weapons, especially one guy who is getting solo toss after solo toss. All on rifles now. Aside from the guy, there wasn’t much interesting going on.
Walled Lake Central HS – Nice body work from the guard to open the show. First rifle toss nailed, then the second. More rifles appearing now, starting in the front before getting passed back through the guard. Some intricate rifle work during the first half with the members in almost constant motion. Half the guard switching to flags. Crowd is into the performance. All on flags, tight and dynamic unison work. That was a standout performance.
Centerville HS – Very space age feel to the show. Dancers with a few flags. Solo rifle tosses, followed by solo sabre. Now on flag, rifle, and sabre. Nice ripple toss of flags to the side, followed by ripple toss back of rifles. Full guard rifle moment, but nothing really standing out during this section. Full flag feature more interesting. Music stopped abruptly at the end, not sure the show is finished.
Northmont HS: “Shattered” – Props are either reflective or see through, very optical illusion in nature. Guard body movement is clean and defined. Equipment makes its appearance with a nice sabre toss and flag work. Weapon work is very strong, including some old school rifle spinning. Flags get some love and are very clean. Time for all flags. A lot of energy coming from this group and they nailed this performance.
Greenwood HS: “Behold My Heart” – Nice solo sabre to start. Flags using a curved pole, adds a nice visual effect. A lot of flowing fabric between the flags and the uniforms, making for a very colorful and dynamic performance. Strong flag toss followed by sabre toss. Rifles now making their appearance. Multiple rifle tosses in succession. Three members are working with a long scrim of fabric, adding yet more color to the show. Almost all on flags with a trio of rifles nailing their work. Excellent flag toss from front line to back line. Final flag toss has member catch while holding another member.
Franklin Central HS – “You are the embodiment of your sin” is the opening line of the soundtrack. This must be a happy show. Solo guard member in red, the rest in black. One flag is mainly red, looks like she has a red A in her uniforms. All on flag with a soloist on a center platform. Nice sabre work. Show design isn’t really pulling me in. Some members now working with long thin red boards, red apparently representing sin in this show but nothing’s really happening, at least until a powerful duet rifle toss. One member forgot to display her scarlet letter.
Greenfield Central HS: “In This Shirt” – Nice body work to open the show. Solo,sabres in the back corner start tossing one after another. Nailed the ripple sabre toss. Flags are a great black to gray fade look. Equipment work is strong throughout. Simple show design with all color coming from the floor until the final flags. Rifles mail a toss mid floor. The guard work also goes well with the music. Powerful performance and got a few people to stand up at the end.
Lake Central HS: “Aftermath” – Guard is all female with long hair (extensions?) except for a one male in a gray hoodie and cargo pants, slowly making his way across the floor. A lot of movement from this group, both dance and equipment. Male has stopped midway and is almost a show prop the guard uses. Back in motion. Nice rifle work. Powerful flag work, too. Another group which kept my attention to the point where I didn’t get a picture.
State Of Art: “The Silver Lining” – Very strong dance work to start. Killer rifle tosses happening now. Sabres doing some intricate work before tossing, nicely done. Flags along the floor border. Half the guard on rifle, the other half dancing. All on flag now. Nice unison work. Dance work is the strongest for this group.
South Shore – I think this is the first all male guard I’ve seen perform live. Seriously insane rifle tosses happening all over the place. Half the guard is on rifle in the center of the floor, the rest on black flags outside. These are by far the highest rifle tosses of the day. Great dance work happening in the center now. Full flag action, incredibly dynamic. That performance got A LOT people off their feet. They’re even getting cheered while removing their tarp.
Interplay: “Love Is An Army” – Guard starts with something similar to drum major batons. A lot of equipment work in this show, in fact. Love the wood finish on the rifles, too. Nice flag work center floor. Rifles moving off to the right doing some nice old school spinning. Equipment changes are almost continuous but lead to a full flag feature. During said features the music pauses and the guard does a silent routine almost flawlessly. Great way to end the show.
Warren Central HS: “The Elephant In The Room” – There is a large elephant prop and multiple speakers set up for this show. I also notice some guard member holding whip props. There are now elephant sounds coming from those speakers. The whip bearers march around the floor perimeter while the rest dance. Ripple rifle toss while the whippers whip loudly. Rifle toss, followed by sabre toss, while flags and whips do their things. Everybody comes up front and switches to rifles. This show is spending too much time telling me about truth. Full unison rifle moment center floor. Rifles now spinning hard while galloping around the floor. Full flag feature to end the show. That elephant did nothing, just sit in the back. Not sure that will continue through the season.
Center Grove HS: “By The Grim Moonlight” – Lots of dead tree props on the back of the floor, plus scary sounds coming from the sound system. A white globe on a tall pole represents the moon over the dead forest. Guard us wearing red capelets, like Little Red Riding Hood. Dancing to start the show. Yep, there’s the hoods. Solo sabre toss starts the switch to equipment. Solo male comes onto the floor with rifle, joined by other rifles in the guard. Solo male rifle and female sabre up front, all other weapons together in back. All on flags now except for rifle guy. Sudden end with the guard slam,Inc their flags to the floor.
Carmel HS: “Word” – This guard has live microphones on their own sound system lined along the front of the floor. Single guard member in the center of the floor, the rest on the perimeter coming in to join her. Members are reciting lines which the sound system is also playing. Not sure what this does besides keep those members from doing work. I am way too distracted from the members talking into the mics. There’s a lot of actual guard work going on but I can’t focus on it except when there’s no talking. I liked what I saw, though.
Zydeco: “Remember The Tin Man” – An abstract yellow brick road forms the basis of the stage for this show. A lot of running around before joints seize up due to “rusting”, then the sabre tosses start. The performance is very intense, almost overwhelming with how much is happening at the same time. Rifles have a powerful unison moment before spreading out on the floor and ripple tossing. A lone red flag begins the transition to silks from weapons. Strong unison flag work is dazzling to the eye. The show ends with a tin man frozen in a wave as Dorothy leaves.
Pride Of Cincinnati: “Preaching To The Choir” – Plenty of body movement mixed with rifle and sabre work lead to a ripple weapon toss. Flags start to appear at this point. Flag feature starts with pairs doing work across the floor and lead into a full feature with many tosses. This is also the first time I’ve heard Bill Maher and Steven Colbert during a guard show. Back on rifles now, then broken into groups of each piece of equipment and dance. The uniforms evoke both the Sunday best which people wear to church and, at the same time, purple choir robes. At the end, a member is held as if on a cross while, up front, another member looks away and holds her hand out as if to deny that. A very thought provoking and powerful performance.