The Summerville High School Band of Summerville, South Carolina, won the grand championship award at the 16th annual Tournament of Champions high school marching band competition held at Western Carolina University on Saturday, Oct. 22.
The Summerville band took third place in last year’s event. The invitational competition is hosted by WCU’s Pride of the Mountains Marching Band at E.J. Whitmire Stadium.
Twenty bands from across the Southeast took part in this year’s event and competed for various awards including the prestigious Chancellor’s Award Trophy – a large glass traveling trophy presented to the grand champion band.
Bands finishing second and third, respectively, were East Lincoln High School of Denver and Fayette County High School of Fayetteville, Georgia. East Lincoln won the North Carolina “Roll of Honor,” which is awarded to the band from North Carolina with the highest score in the competition.
Bands also were divided into four classifications based on the number of musicians and ranked in a variety of categories by a panel of judges with these results: Class A Champion – North Henderson High School, Hendersonville; Class AA Champion – East Lincoln High School, Denver; Class AAA Champion – Ardrey Kell High School, Charlotte; and Class AAAA Champion – Summerville High School, Summerville, South Carolina.
The judges and advisers included were Dale Warren, senior wind band conductor at the University of Arkansas, chief judge; Dave Carbone, percussion judge coordinator for the Carolina Winter Ensemble Association, Bluffton, South Carolina, music judge; Jeremy Earnhart, director of fine arts for the Arlington Independent School District, Arlington, Texas, music judge; Glenn Fugett, director of bands and orchestras, Nashville School of the Arts, Nashville, Tennessee, music judge; Doug Thrower, musical designer for the 2016 DCI World Champion Bluecoats, Mississauga, Ontario, Canada, music judge; Kyle Miller, adjudicator with Bands of America, Drum Corps International and Winterguard International, Las Vegas, Nevada, visual judge; Jeff Sacktig, drill designer at Carolina Crown Drum and Bugle Corps, Woodstock, Georgia, visual judge; Tim Jackson, percussion arranger and creative designer at Rhythm X Indoor Percussion Ensemble, Columbus, Ohio, percussion judge; Adam Sage, adjudicator for Bands of America and Winterguard International, Delray Beach, Florida, color guard judge; Michael Huebner, assistant director of bands, Kennesaw Mountain High School, Kennesaw, Georgia, drum major judge; Tommy Smith, former director of bands at Northwest Guilford High School, Greensboro, timing and penalties judge; Bob Buckner, former director of athletic bands, WCU, clinician; and David Starnes, director of athletic bands, WCU, clinician.