Assessment of marching

assessment of marching

I want to tell you something about the assessment of marching. Nearly every brassband in Austria participate on those assessments.

The idea of assessments:
The brassband appears in public. It has to present the music as good as it can for the ear. And it has to present the marchmusic in the best formatting for the eye.
The "Magic of the uniform" is very important for machmusic. That mean, that the uniform should be neat and goodlooking.

In the 16 century during the Turkish siege there were developed some small groups about 6-8 men. They were called "Musikbanda" and consisted of fanfare windplayers and drummers.
Many years later they became brassbands of the city with about 22-24 men.

The marchmusic assessment came into being in 1952 in Austria.
In the last years marchmusic became very popular in Austria. In upperaustria there are 482 brassbands and 322 take part on assessments.

For the marchmusic is the leader of the baton responsible. He has to look after the cleanliness of the uniform and the instruments. Of course he has to know and show all signs which are important for the members to lead them.

The levels:
In Austria there are clear directions and there are the same for the whole country.
There are five levels, you call them A, B, C, D and E.
A is the easiest and E the highest. Every level is made up of the other.

A the easiest is for youth brassbands. In this level you have to do:
. To line up
. Announcement to the assessor
. To trash away the march
. The marching off
. To break off the march
. To stop together
. To go off

In level B you have to marching off and to stop while playing a march.
In level C you have to play the march from memory and the brassband has to change the rows for example: from 5 people per row in a row with 3 people. That is important for narrow passages.
In level D the brassband has to turn around.
The highest level E:
You have to know all other levels and additional the brassband have to make a marching show about 12 minutes. Some extra directions are to play minimum 2 pieces of march and an other piece of music. My brassband plays since 1986 in the level E.
Now I'd like to show you a marching show of an assessment two years ago.