Following trend this season, Blue Devils stole the show at the historic J. Birney Crum Stadium in Allentown, Pa. on Friday, Aug. 3, scoring a season high 95.10 points. Carolina Crown (93.95) took second place 1.15 points behind. "It's good knowing where we stand as of right now, and to know how much more we need to push," Blue Devils color guard captain Rachel Silva said. "We're going to keep pushing to the end. We've got some rehearsal days coming up, and we're just going to push, push, push." Silva said the upcoming rehearsal days will be spent tweaking tiny things in their 2012 field show "Cabaret Voltaire." She says no major changes to the production are planned. "Finals Week is when we all come together," Blue Devils drum major Matt Williams said. "We tighten down the screws and line everything up. It's all about those little tiny things to get those last couple of points, those last tenths that we need."
Reverse placements occurred in the Percussion caption, with Carolina Crown taking first to Blue Devils' second place. An improvement for the South Carolina corps, one week ago in Atlanta Crown's percussion section placed seventh. Edging out the Bluecoats (4th, 90.30) was Phantom Regiment (3rd, 92.95), with Spirit of Atlanta (5th, 84.20) following behind. Tuba player Ikio Johnson said the audience reaction at Crum Stadium to Spirit of Atlanta's 2012 field show "Sin City," was surprisingly good, and he's pretty happy about it. Excluding a third place Percussion score, the Bluecoats placed fourth in every caption. Ending up in sixth place was Pacific Crest (6th, 76.65), followed by Troopers (7th, 76.05) and Colts (8th, 75.30). Scores tightened up from sixth to eighth place, with the three corps 1.35 points apart. Two weeks ago at the DCI Southwestern Championship, the lineup was reversed.
According to Colts drum major Casey Hallahan, the DCI Eastern Classic is always a fun show. He said the season has been going well for the Colts, specifically mentioning the ending segment of their production "Boundaries." "There's nothing better than a screamer trumpet solo and then a company front," Hallahan said. Finishing out the Friday night results were Mandarins (9th, 69.95) and Pioneer (10th, 65.45). "The crowd was on their feet at the end," Mandarins brass captain head Santiago Sabado said. "I really think they liked it." Sabado said despite having a younger group of marchers this year, the corps' 2012 tour is going well and has been an awesome year for the entire organization.
In less than a week, the 2012 season will start its closure at the DCI World Championship Prelims. It will be the last Finals Week for both the Blue Devils' Silva and Williams who will be finishing their last season of eligibility. Silva has been with the corps since 2008, and Williams since 2009. "I'm excited and nervous and happy and eager to see what's going to come next year," Silva said about aging out. "It's bittersweet, but it's time and who knows what will happen next year." And for Hallahan, there's one more year to go before he ages out. "I'm 20 years old, so I've got one more year," he said. "Going for the double digits." He's been with the Colts organization for nine years — four years with the Colt Cadets and five years with the Colts. Fourteen corps will take the field at J. Birney Crum Stadium for the second day of the DCI Eastern Classic on Saturday, Aug. 4. View a complete recap of scores from the Friday edition of the DCI Eastern Classic. View the DCI Eastern Classic lineup for Saturday, Aug. 4. Contributing to this report: Michael Boo, Jessica Skogh, Linda and Sid Unser