Flashdance: The Anatomy of Claudia Taylor Johnson's Show

Anytime the design team of a marching band show gathers to discuss an upcoming production, there is almost a guarantee that the concept will change. The same was true for director Jarrett Lipman and the Claudia Taylor Johnson band.

In preparation for the upcoming release of All Access: Claudia Taylor Johnson, FloMarching spoke with Lipman about how CTJ's outside-the-box concept for its 2016 production developed.

"We were originally going to do Footloose," Jarrett said. "But we felt like there was too much 'storytelling' that would have to happen in such a short period of time."

null

The design team then landed on Flashdance. The overall concept morphed into a celebration of different dance styles, and since Flashdance came from the same era of the original Footloose idea, it was an easy choice.

While some shows are designed with a deep intellectual connection and meaning, Lipman said this year's band at CTJ wanted to have one memorable moment per production and for its spectators to be able to connect with the show after a single viewing.

In the marching arts, outside-the-box concepts, arrangements, drills, etc., are constantly being pushed -- sometimes not far enough and sometimes way, way too far. However, when a band goes so far outside the box that it loses its connection with the audience, it's time to reel back in the show's concept.

Flashdance was able to avoid this by developing into a much more cohesive production for fans of CTJ to follow. Flashing lights and flashy choreography and concepts throughout the show were the simple bows that wrapped all of the show's different musical styles together.

By using these overarching themes and pushing the boundaries of design, CTJ was able to weave musical transitions from Daft Punk to Pineapple Poll to Maniac all while maintaining a connection to audience so that it would ultimately be entertained.

BONUS!

Want to check out some of the original version of the Claudia Taylor Johnson's show music? Well here you go. Enjoy!

Oregon Crusaders Will Not Field Corps In 2019

The front page of Oregon Crusaders' website is completely bare aside from three sentences:

DCI's Voting Membership Revokes Pioneer's Membership

Pioneer Drum & Bugle Corps will no longer be allowed to participate in Drum Corps International after a vote this afternoon at the DCI Annual Meeting in Indianapolis, IN. They will, however, be allowed to reapply for Open Class participation in 2020.

DCI "Jannuals" Focus On Health, Wellness & Safety

This year's DCI Annual Meeting is underway with about 350 attendees meeting in Indianapolis, IN with a focus on health, wellness, and safety. 

DCI's Open Class Will Look A Lot Different In 2019

Since 2009, only three drum and bugle corps have earned the Open Class World Championship trophy: Blue Devils B, Vanguard Cadets and Oregon Crusaders.

Tarp vs. Turf: Comparing Indoor Percussion To Outdoor

Dan Schack is the Battery Coordinator/Choreographer of Carolina Crown Drum and Bugle Corps and the Creative Director of George Mason University Indoor Drumline. Outside of his musical endeavors, Dan is pursuing a Ph.D. in English at the University of Delaware.

Join PRO Now to Get Unlimited Access to FloMarching!

Join Now

Already a PRO Member? Log In

Rose Parade Welcomes Bands From All Over

One of the most coveted parades of the year, the Tournament of Roses Rose Parade, is only days away. Nineteen groups will perform in the 5.5-mile parade—ouch. The parade travels through Pasadena at a leisurely pace and often includes horses and floats among the marching ensembles.

College Football Playoff 2018: Battle Of The Bands Final Results

No one was standing in the way of Clemson's football team this year—or their band. After last night's win in Levi's Stadium, it seemed like it couldn't get any better for Clemson fans. But wait, there's more. The final results for the CFP Battle of the Bands are here and we have our winner: the Clemson University Tiger Band!

A Very Special Marching Arts Holiday Season Spectacular

It's the time of the year where you pull out your 2012 DCI World Championship finals DVD and annoy your friends and family with that iconic Cadets show "12.25." 

The 2018 FloMarchies: Vote On The "Best Dressed" Of 2018

It has been a crazy year, and it's just about time we celebrated all of the amazing performances that we saw in WGI, DCI, and BOA in 2018!

The 2018 FloMarchies: Vote On The "Best Fan Favorite" Of 2018

It has been a crazy year, and it's just about time we celebrated all of the amazing performances that we saw in WGI, DCI, and BOA in 2018!