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OMEA Scoring

If this is your first marching band event, or if you are new to the world of marching bands, you may be wondering how the OMEA judges come to their conclusion in rating the performing bands! Perhaps the following will help you to understand the process of judging a band show. (OMEA, by the way, stands for Ohio Music Education Association, of which the Directors must be members in order to participate.)

First, letʼs explain classifications.

A. Classification for OMEA events is determined by total school enrollment of grades 10 through 12 inclusive.

B. The following classification shall be used:

AA 901 or more students in grades 10–12
A 501 to 900 students in grades 10–12
B 301 to 500 students in grades 10–12
C 300 or fewer students in grades 10–12

C. A band may enter a higher classification than specified by enrollment, but not a lower.

D. Every band member must be a bona-fide member of the school, and must not be over 20 years of age. No student below the seventh grade may participate in high school contests.

Second, let’s look at the Judging Panel.

There are several judges involved in the evaluation of the bands. Of these, two judge the music performance, two judge the visual performance, two judge general effect, and one judges percussion. Another judge keeps track of timing requirements and notes rule infractions that occur. There may be other judges that adjudicate special units, i.e. auxiliary, field commander, soloists.

OMEA Marching Band Scoring (300 points total)

  1. Two Visual Judges (both in the press box). One will judge Visual Performance and one will judge Visual Effect. Visual Performance includes Content, Ensemble Execution, Individual Execution. Visual Effect includes Repertoire, Showmanship, and Performance. If points are given, scores will be added together: Maximum 50+50= 100

  2. Two Music Judges (both in the press box). Music judges listen for tone and intonation, execution, content, and technique. If points are given, scores will be averaged. Maximum 90+90/2= 90

  3. Two General Effects Judges (both in the press box). General Effect judges include Visual and Musical repertoire, Performance Effectiveness, and the Coordination of the Music and Drill. If points are given, scores should be averaged. Maximum 100+100/2= 100

  4. One Percussion Judge (at performance level). The Percussion judge listens for Music Presentation, Precision, Technique, and General Effectiveness withing the ensemble. Maximum 10 points. The rating awarded by the Percussion Judge is then averaged with percussion rating awarded by the Music Judges, using the three stage panel example found later in the handbook.

  5. Two Auxiliary Judges (must be in the press box). Auxiliary judges include Visual Repertoire, Interpretation, Equipment use, and Technique. If points are given, scores should be averaged. Maximum 100+100/2= 100

Now, how does the band qualify for OMEA State Finals? To qualify for OMEA State Finals, bands must earn a Superior rating in four of the seven major captions and a total score of less than 11.

Music Judge #1 (gives an overall music rating and a percussion rating)
Music Judge #2 (gives an overall music rating and a percussion rating)
Percussion Score = composite of the percussion score of Music Judge #1, the percussion score of Music Judge #2 and the score of the Percussion Judge
General Effect #1
General Effect #2
Visual Effect
Visual Performance
Timing and Penalties (give one lower rating for every 10 points in penalties)

How does the Color Guard fit in?
While the Auxiliary scores are not used in determining the band
ʼs overall score, they are valuable in the General Effect scores. The General Effect judges include the Color Guard in their evaluation of the bandʼs overall audience appeal, drill construction, music performance, interpretation, visual style, etc.

So how did Scioto do at (Springfield) Northwestern?

Music 1 = 78.3/90

Music 2 = 80/90

Music Average = 78.3 + 80 / 2 = 79.15/90

Percussion = 8.3

Total Music = 79.15 + 8.3 = 87.45/100

Visual 1 = 41/50

Visual 2 = 40/50

Total Visual = 41 + 40 = 81

General Effect 1 = 81

General Effect 2 = 78

Total General Effect = 81 + 78 / 2 = 79.5

Total Score = 87.45 + 81 + 79.5 = 247.95/300 for second place in our class. (Middletown had a total score of 259.25.)

Color Guard 1 = 78 Color Guard 2 = 72

Total Color Guard = 76 + 75 / 2 = 75.5/100.

At first glance, it may appear the Color Guard did not do well with 75 points out of 100. On the contrary. Not all of our Color Guard repertoire is on the field yet. And since they are rated by the General Effect judges as well, it is apparent that we have great work in the repertoire so far. And before one wonders why all the Color Guard repertoire isnʼt complete, you should know that the winds and percussion repertoire is far from complete as well. While most of the music is “on the field” it is far from complete. While all the drill is “on the field” there is a great deal of cleaning to do. And there are numerous visuals that will be added as the season progresses.

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