Band competes twice in one day

THE SPIRIT OF MADISON field competition show piece, "Bent" calls upon band members to bend during the performance. On bass drums are Elijah Olson (left), Jackson Boldt, Joey Brandenburger and Kelsey O'Connell.

Growth has brought new challenges to the Spirit of Madison marching band -- most significantly the challenge of competing in a new class. On Saturday, they participated in two competitions with their field show, "Bent."

In Luverne, Minn., the Spirit of Madison was among 26 bands from South Dakota, Minnesota and Iowa to compete in the 69th Annual Tri-State Band Festival. This festival includes both field and parade competitions; the Madison band participated in the field competition only.

Competing in Class AA, the Spirit of Madison finished fifth out of six bands in that class.

From Luverne, the band traveled to Brandon, where they performed in the Big Sioux Review. This event is hosted by the Brandon Valley Marching Lynx.

Fourteen bands competed in three classes. The Spirit of Madison finished second out of four bands in Class A.

Band director Nicole Becker was satisfied with the results.

"This weekend can be particularly exhausting, simply because there are multiple performances," she said. "Overall, I am extremely impressed with the effort of the students."

She pointed out that with the larger band, they are competing against tough bands in larger class sizes.

"They make me so proud of the improvement they have each week," she said.

The Spirit of Madison has three more competitions this fall. The next competition will be the Festival of Bands at Howard Wood Field in Sioux Falls on Saturday.