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Fern trombone

We welcome high school bands to participate in the 26th Heart of America Marching Festival sponsored by the University of Kansas Bands and the Northeast District of the Kansas Music Educators Association.  The contest date is Saturday, October 20, 2018.  


The staff and students at the University of Kansas are committed to making this the most accessible, organized, and enjoyable festival for your group, as well as a useful and rewarding educational experience.  We will utilize some of the best adjudicators available from across the nation, giving your group superb feedback and insight into your performance. 


For 2018, the Heart of America Festival will once again utilize a single performance format (no finals). 



Registration and Fee

Directors who wish to participate should email Dr. Matt Smith by September 21.  An online registration form will be sent to participating directors in early fall.  The entry fee for the 2018 Heart of America Marching Festival will be $400.  Invoices will be sent to directors in the fall.



Classifications and Scheduling

Bands will be assigned based on total number of winds in the band.


Class 1:         60 winds or fewer

Class 2:         61-90 winds

Class 3:         91-105 winds

Class 4:         106+ winds


Bands may choose to compete in a higher class if desired.  We will also consider performance order within divisions based on last year’s results.  The specific performance times will be announced after the registration deadline.  While we can attempt to honor special scheduling requests due to school activities, we cannot guarantee that they can be accommodated. 


Scoring System

A panel of seven judges will evaluate each band. Directors will have the option of receiving a rating/ranking or comments only.  All bands will receive adjudication sheets and recorded comments from the adjudicators. 


Music General Effect (2 judges) - 40%

Visual General Effect (1 judge) - 20%

Music Performance Ensemble (1 judge) - 20%

Visual Performance Ensemble (1 judge) - 20%

Auxiliary/Colorguard (one judge for caption award only – not used in the overall score)

Percussion (one judge for caption award only – not used in the overall score)




1st Division Rating – score of 75.0 or higher

2nd Division Rating – score of 50.0 – 74.99

3rd Division Rating – score of 0 – 49.99


1st, 2nd, and 3rd Place for each class


Outstanding Music (Music General Effect + Music Performance Ensemble)

Outstanding Visual (Visual General Effect + Visual Performance Ensemble)

Outstanding General Effect (Music General Effect + Visual General Effect)

Outstanding Auxiliary/Colorguard

Outstanding Percussion


Overall Grand Champion – highest overall score 

School of Music Events

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