Phantom Regiment's "Show of Shows," held last night in the corps' hometown of Rockford, Ill., drew a packed house to Boylan High School stadium last night, where the Cavaliers (80.65) came out on top over the Cadets (79.15) and the hosting corps (76.20).
After the show, Cavaliers' director Jeff Fiedler commended his winning corps. "The guys did a great job. We put a couple changes in in the last two days, and actually they handled them very well." Fiedler noted that the corps will continue to tweak its 2003 program, "Spin Cycle," in the coming days. "There are a couple things in the opener that need some changes, but from a timing standpoint, they probably did the best job of the year," Fiedler said. "We judge us against ourselves. It's not about the competition aspect of it for us, but rather, 'Is this going to be the best Cavalier program yet?'" Fiedler said of how the corps measures its own progress. Fiedler was confident about how the fans feel about "Spin Cycle." "From what I hear from people, they seem to like this show better than last year," Fiedler said. "Last year we were a little inaccessible in June, so we made some changes. People are getting it right away -- they understand what the show's about, and they're pretty receptive to it." The biggest challenge the Cavaliers face is "Just getting everything we want to be in the show in the show," Fiedler said. "Things are going fairly successfully right now – rehearsals are going well, the guys are bonding, they're doing what we ask them to do." Fiedler added that the design team is facing the biggest challenge, in adding all the desired elements to "Spin Cycle" before the end of the summer. The Cadets pulled off a decent performance until the very last segment of the show, according to director George Hopkins. "(The show was) Good -- until about the last minute, then it was not so good," Hopkins said. "We kind of ran out of gas." Regarding the plan for the next wave of the evolution of the Cadets' show, Hopkins said, "Long range, we're making changes already. We're planning what our off-days are," Hopkins said. "It's a balancing act until we get some days off, which is not going to be until the end of June." The last third of the Cadets' show is proving to be taxing on the corps' horn line. "Getting them to make it to the end of the show is a struggle," Hopkins said. "We have a lot of work to do on our own," Hopkins said. Despite the challenges, however, Hopkins is pleased with the show thus far. "We're just happy to bring this show to the field," Hopkins said. "We hope the fans enjoy it a lot."
Phantom Regiment on Monday night in Rockford