OSWEGO, ILL. -- The Glassmen of Toledo, Ohio, topped five other corps in an early-season matchup tonight. "The Glassmen won it with their feet," said Mike Pfiel, who noted the relatively clean marching show the Glassmen performed. Pfiel, 21, is a drum corps veteran from Pennsylvania currently interning at Drum Corps International. At the "2002 Festival of Brass," the Glassmen scored 66.6 out of a possible 100 points, edging out the Phantom Regiment (64.55), the Madison Scouts (59.8), the Blue Knights (59.05), the Capital Sound (45.2) and the Kingsmen (24.45).The Glassmen routine, entitled "Odyssey," capitalizes on strong musical dynamic variety, and employs an interesting juxtaposition of silence at certain points. The drill starts with Glassmen members spread liberally around all points of the field, which one judge tonight referred to as a "big focus." The marching drill is extremely fast at other points, particularly during one segment when the corps is silent.The temperamental June 2002 Illinois weather played a key role tonight, as corps performing early played into a driving rain. The Capital Sound, however, played directly underneath a spectacular rainbow. The rain did not hinder an enthusiastic crowd, who braved the elements and stayed at the contest despite the nasty weather (which eventually cleared up).Conditions on the field were not exactly perfect even after the rain subsided. Monica Simon, 21, a Phantom Regiment mellophone player from Milwaukee, Wis., said that the field was damp and the grass was long. She also noted that the back half of the field sported a steep drop-off, which made marching tricky, even though the Regiment had practiced on the Oswego field for the last three days. "Actually, the condition of the field was better than last night," said Brandon Estes, 21, a Madison Scout snare drummer from Houston. "We stayed pretty much front field though, so I didn't have too much of a problem," Estes said.Various drum corps staff members said the Festival of Brass was an entertaining early season contest."I thought there were outstanding performances tonight," said Kirk Hickman, 23, of DeKalb, Ill., who works as an instructor with Capital Sound. "I know for Regiment, it's their first show, and they came out of the gates really strong.""I though it was great!" said Jim Yakas, 28, also from DeKalb, Ill., who works instructs the Madison Scouts. "There was a lot of energy out there. I thought it was great, and very entertaining," Yakas said.
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