By: Jeff Griffith
In one of the final summertime events remaining before the SoundSport International Music and Food Festival in Indianapolis, three talented ensembles threw down to open up the DCI Southeastern Championship presented by Jupiter, Mapex and Majestic on Saturday in Powder Springs, Georgia.
Impact, an Orlando-based ensemble which earned a gold rating and the day’s “Best of Show” honors, managed to improve on its silver rating earned earlier this month at the SoundSport event held in Orlando.
This August, for the very first time, the ensemble will be headed to Indianapolis for the SoundSport International Music and Food Festival which is held in conjunction with the DCI World Championships.
“We’re looking forward to Indianapolis, and this is our first trip up there,” Impact director Sayre Kulp said. “Last year our goal was to get to Atlanta for the Southeastern Championship, and we did that, so this year we’re expanding and going a little further. We’re looking forward to playing for an audience that is there just for us.”
Owners of their third silver rating in as many trips to the annual Atlanta-area SoundSport event, Sonus Brass Theater of Woodbridge, Virginia, is now in the thick of its third season performing under the SoundSport banner.
The ensemble recently made some new additions to its 2017 production.
“This is our first performance this year with drill on the move, and I thought it looked pretty good” director Sean Peck said. “We got through the show without any major (tempo) tears or anything, and for the most part, what we’ve been doing in practices translated to the field.”
For Sonus, this will be the group’s third year attending SoundSport’s headline event in Indianapolis, which is something highly anticipated by veteran and first-year members alike.
“We have several members who have been with us for a while and like the whole environment of the activity. We also have a lot of new high school students who are just excited to be there for the World Championships and to see the big corps perform,” Peck said. “It’ll be cool to see the different groups that we’ve gotten to know the last few years from across the country in SoundSport competition.”
As for The Rocketeers, the Huntsville, Alabama ensemble earned a bronze rating on Saturday, and like Impact, will also be headed to Indianapolis for the first time in just a few weeks. This trip to the SoundSport International Music and Food Festival will fulfill a longtime goal of one of the program’s earliest-participating organizations.
“We’re excited about Indianapolis, and it’s something we’ve really been working on since we started with SoundSport,” director Thomas Peterson said. “I think in the past we’ve kind of felt like we just weren’t quite ready for that, but this year we are.”
While all three ensembles will join 16 others in Indianapolis, a handful of SoundSport teams including Sonus Brass Theater can also be seen in Allentown, Pennsylvania’s scenic Cedar Creek Park free of charge prior to the DCI Eastern Classic on August 5.