They put on a new show for every home game. Here is a great post on Reddit about how they do it at OSU:I mean, did they put this show together for one game? Surely it takes more than a week to pull this off, but I think they do a different show every week. Guessing they work on this all spring / summer.
OSU's band is legendary for a reason.
that is brutalThey put on a new show for every home game. Here is a great post on Reddit about how they do it at OSU:
TBDBITL alumnus here... Guess I might as well come out a bit in the regard...
The basic marching fundamentals are taught during twice weekly, two hour, voluntary rehearsals from June until August. Band tryouts are held the two days after DCI Finals. Over the summer, the only music rehearsed is school songs (Fight The Team, Buckeye Battle Cry, Carmen Ohio, Hang On Sloopy, I Wanna Go Back, Le Regiment). No drill charts or show music is passed out until after band tryouts are complete.
Once the band is selected, they rehearse 9-noon, 2-5, 7-9 Monday through Friday until the first week of school (usually 1.5 to 2.5 weeks later). We call it Three-A-Days, others would call it "band camp." During these lengthy rehearsals, the band learns the Pregame routine (which typically only has one set change per week - the visiting team fight song and logo set), and begins learning the first two halftime shows.
The band plays a new halftime show for each home game, and a custom, shortie show if the first game is an away game with band travel. That means the 2017 season has 8 halftime shows (7 plus a half length show played at Indiana). The band also has the standard pregame show to memorize, as well as an away game/bowl game pregame show to memorize.
How do they/did I do it? It's all mind over matter. Having the OSU School Songs memorized from the summer means that much less work during the season. So... Let me give you the nightmare scenario: A one week show.
Monday: music and charts are posted to Box file sharing program for printout and download on to iPads or other devices. The music is sight read and rehearsed briefly, and then Alternates and Challenged Regulars head down for the weekly Alternate challenges to see if the alternate band member (who didn't march the week before) has better fundamentals than the person they chose to go up against. Marching and playing are scored, and then a decision is made on who wins. Around that time, the remainder of the band comes down to the field to start charting through the Pregame sets and the first movement or two of the halftime show. Not much playing and marching on the first day.
Tuesday - Thursday: music rehearsal (first 45 minutes of rehearsal). Then outside for drill (last 60 minutes of rehearsal). Usually outdoor rehearsal starts with a quick run of pregame, followed by chunking through the halftime show. Recordings of the halftime music are made inside and played back during field rehearsal to help members feel where sets and music line up before playing. Outdoor playing begins Tuesday and people add in based on what they have memorized to that point.
Friday: Gray Day! Rehearsal is in the OSUMB gray uniform (Nike Athletic shorts and shirt with the band hat) and treated like a dress rehearsal. Music is quickly run through one last time inside while Squad Leaders have their music memorization checked by Directors. Then right outside for music checks. All of the show music and the opposing team fight song are ran in a standstill block while the squad leaders walk their rows and listen for mistakes, non-players, and so forth. If a squad leader fails you, you have to appeal the section to a director for a second chance. The rest of rehearsal includes full runs of pregame and halftime, as well as last minute adjustments.
TBH, there have been a few one week shows where Friday hits and the show was still so rough and not yet learned that we've had to stay past rehearsal end time for 30 minutes or so to get it together.
All told, during the semester, the band rehearses from 4:10-6:15 Monday through Friday. The drill is not difficult. The longest show I marched was 48 sets. It just requires confidence in step size, good spatial awareness, and being confident in your dots. Of course, covering down, covering diagonals, and guiding to the form are all necessities. The music isn't always that hard, but I did in fact fail one music check on a one week show. The Band Center is open very late each night of the week, and most students practice on their own upwards of 10-20 hours a week in addition to the standard rehearsal time. TBDBITL rehearsals (aside from Mondays) are very much treated like all age drum corps rehearsals: learn your music on your own, study your charts at home, and come prepared to work and clean what you learned on your own.
It really is. During my time in MDB we usually did a show for 2-3 games. At most we were working on 3 shows at a time: reviewing pregame, that week's show, and learning the next show. We rehearsed 4:00-5:30 M-F and had an hour and a half sectional once a week. That's a drop in the bucket compared to the OSU schedule.that is brutal