2019 BOA Grand National Championships, pres. by Yamaha

Cheat Sheet For The 2019 BOA Season

Cheat Sheet For The 2019 BOA Season

Here is all of the most critical info that you will need to be up-to-speed on the 2019 Bands of America season as EVERY weekend comes LIVE to FloMarching!

Sep 12, 2019 by Andy Schamma
Cheat Sheet For The 2019 BOA Season
Here is all of the most critical information that you will need to be up-to-speed on the 2019 Bands of America season as EVERY regional weekend comes LIVE to FloMarching!

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Here is all of the most critical information that you will need to be up-to-speed on the 2019 Bands of America season as EVERY regional weekend comes LIVE to FloMarching!

Watch the 2019 BOA Season LIVE on FloMarching!
Training | Events | ENCORE

Competitive Format

The judging format for Bands of America is pretty easy to understand if you already know how the DCI judging format works. It's fairly similar, but removes the section-specific performance caption awards and adds an emphasis on musical performance. As the 2019 Rulebook explains, "the weight of the numbers in the scoring system places 60% of the value on music and 40% on visual, and at the same time, 60% of the score is within the area of general effect and 40% within the Performance Area."

If you're new to this kind of scoring system, the main thing to understand is that musical performance and show design that is captivating, innovative, and thought-provoking. Musical performance is held at the highest standard and designing a seamless show that puts that talent on a pedestal should see considerable success in the BOA arena.

The following captions are listed on the judging sheets and a judge is assigned to each one:

  • Music (40 "points")
    • Music Performance (Individual) - 20 points
    • Music Performance (Ensemble) - 20 points
  • Visual (40 "points")
    • Visual Performance (Individual) - 20 points
    • Visual Performance (Ensemble) - 20 points
  • General Effect (60 "points")
    • Visual General Effect - 20 points
    • Music General Effect - 40 points


Regional events host anywhere from 15 to 34 bands. Performance order in prelims is mixed between all classes and the previous year's champion band has the opportunity to choose their performance time. The judging panel changes from prelims to finals.

The top ten bands regardless of class move on to finals. If a class champion band is not in the top ten, they are allowed to perform in exhibition before or after finals competition. Of the top ten, the top 5 and bottom 5 draw timeslots for their finals performance time. The top 5 draw from the last 5 timeslots while the bottom 5 draw from the first 5. Every regional event is followed by a full retreat of the finalists and class champions.

Results include the scores for each band, and the announcement of the Outstanding Music Performance, Outstanding Visual Performance, and Outstanding General Effect awards.

Super Regionals

Super Regionals may contain up to 80 bands performing over two days of competition. They are in a prelims/finals format with most bands performing in prelims on Friday, some on Saturday morning, and then finals on Saturday evening.

Two panels of judges will take turns judging groups of bands. Performance times are determined by a random draw, after considerations are made for travel distance/school demands. The top 14 bands move on to finals, regardless of class. The 14 bands will consist of the 5 highest scoring bands from each panel of judges. The next 4 highest scoring bands will fill out the rest of the spots. The finals judging panel is a mix of the two preliminary panels.

Similar to Regionals, performance order is determined by splitting the finalists into top half/bottom half, but instead of drawing once again for performance time, they use a pre-drawing from when the band first arrived.

Grand National Championships

There is not currently a set number of maximum bands that may compete in the BOA Grand National Championships. The format for Grand Nationals takes elements from the regionals and super regionals to make up a very long and crazy 3-day schedule.

Judges are split into 2 panels for prelims once again and performance order is determined beforehand. When the bands arrive to Indianapolis, however, they must draw two numbers. One number is a pre-drawing for their semifinals timeslot if they move on. The other is the pre-drawing for finals.

The top 11 bands from each prelims panel, plus the next 8 highest scoring groups regardless of the panel, and then finally the top 2 bands from each class if not already included. The top 12 bands in semis will move on to Grand National Finals and once again use to the top half/bottom half format for building the schedule using the pre-drawn number.

Oustanding Music Performance, Outstanding Visual Performance, Outstanding General Effect, and the Al Castronovo Memorial Esprit de Corps Award are presented in the finals ceremony.

2018 Grand National Finals Results

1Carmel (IN)97.350
2Avon (IN)96.175
3Blue Springs (MO)95.600
4Broken Arrow (OK)95.450
5Tarpon Springs (FL)94.600
6Wando (SC)93.950
7William Mason (OH)91.000
8Homestead (IN)90.150
9Jenks (OK)90.100
10Dobyns-Bennett (TN)90.000
11Prosper (TX)90.000
12O'Fallon Township (IL)89.300

2018 Regional Champions

DateEventSchool Name (State)Score
9/22McAllen, TXClaudia Taylor Johnson (TX)79.80
9/22Midland, TXTimber Creek (TX)78.05
9/22Oxford, OHCarmel (IN)83.30
9/29Austin, TXClaudia Taylor Johnson (TX)83.75
9/29Bowling Green, OHWilliam Mason (OH)83.95
9/29Clarksville, TNO'Fallon Township (IL)82.10
10/6Bedford, TX**Flower Mound (TX)86.85
10/6Houston, TXRonald Reagan (TX)88.55
10/6Jacksonville, ALHarrison (GA)81.95
10/13Canton, OHKiski Area (PA)82.45
10/13Gaffney, SCWando (SC)86.55
10/13Orlando, FLTarpon Springs (FL)86.65
10/20Indianapolis, IN*Carmel (IN)91.00
10/20Newark, DENorwin (PA)78.65
10/20Pleasant Hill, CAWest Salem (OR)82.95
10/27Powder Springs, GAWando (SC)89.45
10/27St. George, UTAyala (CA)89.05
10/27St. Louis, MO*Broken Arrow (OK)92.35
11/3San Antonio, TX*Flower Mound (TX)96.60
11/3Van Nuys, CAAyala (CA)87.95

Most Grand National Championship Wins (1980-2018)

School Name (State)Winning YearsTotal Number
Marian Catholic (IL)1985, 1987, 1988, 1989, 1994, 1997, 20007
Carmel (IN)2005, 2012, 2016, 2017, 20185
Broken Arrow (OK)2006, 2011, 20153
Avon (IN)2008, 2009, 20103
Plymouth-Canton (MI)1990, 1991, 19993
Rocky Mount (NC)1983, 1984, 19863
Lawrence Central (IN)2001, 20042
Lassiter (GA)1998, 20022
Tarpon Springs (FL)20141
The Woodlands (TX)20131
L.D. Bell (TX)20071
Westfield (TX)20031
Lake Park (IL)19961
Center Grove (IN)19951
Spring (TX)19931
Centerville (OH)19921
Norwin (PA)19821
Chesterton (IN)19811
J.M. Tate (FL)19801