By Denney Fifield Ogden, Utah -- For many in Utah, a five-year drought is hard enough, but two years without drum corps is intolerable. "Corps Encore" returned, and thousands of parched fans came to quench their thirst for hair-parting volume and the rumble of percussion that only drum corps can provide.
The Blue Devils took top honors and continued to raise the bar with a score of 87.25, the highest score of the season for any corps. Their high-octane show thrilled the crowd from start to finish. Read Denney Fifield's account of "bringing the kids" to their first DCI show "We started to get the audience on our side last year ... this year we are taking it [the show] to a different level with all the new stuff we are doing," said Casey Brohard, who is in his second year of playing snare drum for the Blue Devils. Of the seven corps that competed at Corps Encore, Brohard is the only corps member from Utah. Placing second with a score of 84.25 was the Phantom Regiment, who made their first-ever stop in Utah. Their unique blend of symphony and ballet won over the crowd and a few "boos" could be heard as the results were announced. Third place belonged to the Santa Clara Vanguard, with a score of 83.20. "They can take the championship with that show, if they can clean it up," said David Huff, a local drum corps fan from Kaysville, Utah, and a former member of the Blue Knights. "That is a championship show." The Blue Knights came in forth place with a score of 76.85, up a full point from the night before. Said Rob Billings, visual caption head for the Blue Knights, "We pretty much finished doing the final touches" to the show. Billings felt the show was really coming together for the Blue Knights and was pleased with their performance. The Seattle Cascades finished with a score of 74.20, also up a full point from the night before, placing them fifth. The crowd cheered the Cascades' full sound and powerful horn line. The Cascades show, "Danzon," brought the crowd to their multiple times throughout their performance. In sixth place, with a score of 64.70, was "America's Corps," the Troopers. Their show, entitled "Reflections of The Blue and The Grey," began with the steady CHUG, chug, chug, chug of "The Great Locomotive Chase" and ended with "Battle" music, vintage Troopers. The Vanguard Cadets were the only Division II corps to perform at Corps Encore. Their show received a 75.55 score and they provided the launching pad for a night of wonderful drum corps performances.
Seattle Cascades took fifth in Ogden, Utah, last night.