2023 DCI World Championships

History Made (Again) | Recapping 2023 DCI World Championship Finals

History Made (Again) | Recapping 2023 DCI World Championship Finals

History was made again! Here are all the exciting storylines you need to know as part of our recap for the 2023 DCI World Championship Finals

Aug 14, 2023 by Natalie Shelton
History Made (Again) | Recapping 2023 DCI World Championship Finals

And just like that, another season of drum corps has come to an end. 

As we bid farewell to Lucas Oil Stadium, here's a recap of all of the history, hype moments, and final scores from the 2023 DCI World Championship Finals.

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Your 2023 DCI World Champion Gold Medalists... The Blue Devils

Blue Devils claimed their 21st gold medal at this year's 2023 DCI World Championship Finals with their program titled, 'The Cut-Outs,' making it the organization's first three-peat ever, all while extending their already impressive unbeaten streak. The last time the Blue Devils lost in overall score was to the Bluecoats at 2019 World Championship Prelims.

In addition to claiming first place, BD also nabbed caption awards in General Effect, Visual Performance, and Color Guard.


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In case you need a refresher on how the scores shook out on Saturday night, here are how the top-12 ended their 2023 seasons:

2023 DCI World Championship Finals
1Blue Devils98.975
3Carolina Crown97.663
4Boston Crusaders96.925
5The Cadets94.313
7Phantom Regiment92.988
8The Cavaliers92.125
11Blue Stars88.625
12Blue Knights86.375

And here are your 2023 DCI World Championship Caption Award winners...

  • John Brazale Best Visual Performance Award: Blue Devils
  • Fred Sanford Best Percussion Performance Award: The Cavaliers
  • Don Angelica Best General Effect Award: Blue Devils
  • Jim Ott Best Brass Performance Award: Carolina Crown
  • George Zingali Best Color Guard Award: Blue Devils

Quick Hits - History Makers, Shakeups, and More

  • Blue Devils win its first Zingali award for the first time since 2015
  • The Cavaliers claim its first Fred Sanford award for the first time since 2011
  • Phantom Regiment earn its highest score and tie for its highest placement since 2014; 7th place with a score of 92.988
  • Colts achieve its highest score in program history on Finals night with a 90.263
  • Mandarins earn its highest-ever score and placement in the World Class; 6th place with a score of 93.775
  • Music City achieve its highest-ever World Class score with an 82.875
  • Troopers earn back-to-back World Class Finalist performances for the first time in program history
  • Blue Knights made its return to Finals after just missing the top-12 cutoff in the 2022 DCI season
  • The Cadets achieved its highest placement since 2016; 5th overall 

Behind-the-Scenes Key Points

  • Dan Acheson has officially overseen his last DCI World Championship competition as the CEO of DCI. Following an emotional tribute to the long-time member of the Drum Corps community, fans now eagerly await who will replace Acheson in the pivotal leadership role
  • Drum Corps International and Visit Indy have announced a multi-year contract extension, building on their longstanding partnership and re-establishing downtown Indianapolis as home to the DCI World Championships and SoundSport International Music and Food Festival through 2033. Learn more here.
  • DCI All Age will be rolled into the mix this upcoming DCI season and will run through 2025. Learn more about the partnership here.

Open Class Recap: Your 2023 DCI Open Class World Champion Gold Medalists... Spartans

Spartans claimed their second Open Class gold medal in program history with their 2023 production titled, 'Surreal.' The Nashua-based drum corps had a stellar season, all culminating in a decisive victory at Open Class World Championships on August 8, winning top placement overall in addition to winning four out of the five Caption awards (General Effect, Visual Performance, Percussion, and Color Guard), with the Brass caption award going to second-place Gold.

Open Class
5The Battalion75.475
7River City Rhythm71.775
87th Regiment71.313
9Colt Cadets70.025
11Les Stentors65.900

And here's a breakdown of the Caption Award winners:

  • Best Brass: Gold
  • Best Visual: Spartans
  • Best Color Guard: Spartans
  • Best General Effect: Spartans
  • Best Percussion: Spartans