Standard-Examiner

Utah's premier marching music event, Corps Encore, returns to Stewart Stadium

Friday , June 29, 2018 - 6:47 AM

Corps Encore will perform in Ogden on Wed., July 11.

Corps Encore will perform in Ogden on Wed., July 11.

An amazing spectacle of sight, sound and movement will fill Weber State’s Stewart Stadium when Corps Encore arrives in town.

“You’ve heard of marching bands, you’ve seen them in a parade but when you see them on the field dancing, playing and performing a show that is totally out of this world, it’s kind of mind-numbing and inspiring,” said Ricky Grasso, tour director for The Blue Knights. “It’s absolutely amazing that these kids, ranging from ages 15 to 21, have this ability to perform something like this.”

Every summer, a variety of competitive junior drum and bugle corps from all over North America stop in Utah on their national tours in preparation for the DCI World Championships.

This year’s show will take place on Wednesday, July 11 and will feature performing groups:

The Academy – Tempe, Arizona

The Battalion – Salt Lake City

Blue Knights – Denver, Colorado

Columbians – Pasco, Wwashington

Oregon Crusaders – Portland, Oregon

Pacific Crest – Diamond Bar, California

Santa Clara Vanguard – Santa Clara, California

Seattle Cascades – Seattle, Wwashington

Troopers – Casper, Wyoming

The performers who are part of Corps Encore devote nearly a year of their life, or sometimes longer, train, practice, travel the world, entertain and compete.

“The thing is their talent doesn’t end at being musicians,” Grasso said. “The fact that they’re running and dancing playing and moving is an art all in itself. You can be the most talented musician in the world sitting on stage but to be a talented musician and be able to run and drop and do all these different things, it’s such a crazy concept to so many people.”

The Blue Knights, which are part of the Ascend Performing Arts program from Colorado, audition about 1,400 people from all over the United States and other countries. The audition camps start in November and take place once a month throughout April. The 150 who are chosen, plus 10 or so replacements who are chosen move to Denver to begin preparing for the tour. 

“When they move to Denver we have this thing called ‘All Days’ and what that means is for four solid weeks they wake up at 7 a.m. and they rehearse until 11 p.m.,” Grasso said. “They learn their show, they condition, they train. These are professional marching athletes. It’s a crazy world all in itself.”

This year’s event will also include BKXperience-Perform. The band clinic will feature full clinic sessions for battery, front ensemble, color guard, winds and student leaders. The clinic will begin at 9 a.m. at the Dee Event Center basketball arena.  At 4:30 p.m., participants will be bussed to Stewart Stadium to watch the conclusion of the Blue Knights rehearsal. Dinner will be provided in the stadium before watching Corps Encore. Prices for the clinic range from $40-50 and participants also receive a T-shirt and a ticket for Corps Encore.

Tickets to Corps Encore cost between $20-30 and the schedule for the evening is as follows: 

5:30 p.m. – Stadium doors open

6:30 p.m. – Opening Ceremonies

11:00 p.m. – Scores announced

To sign up for the clinic or purchase tickets visit ascendperformingarts.org.