There are a lot of visual innovations coming into the indoor and outdoor marching activities. If you are staying current and following the worlds of competitive drum and bugle corps, marching band, indoor winter guard and percussion - the recent trends in uniforming and costuming have been dramatic, striking, and downright amazing.
Here at FansRaise, we put our collective heads together and derived the following list of ensembles (in no particular order) that we feel broke significant new-ground in the uniform/costume realm. Think we missed someone? Go ahead and shout them out in the blog comments - and don't forget to link a video or image!
The 2016 Bluecoats (DCI)
When the Bluecoats hit the field in 2016 with a dramatic departure from previous uniforms, the marching community had a love/hate visceral reaction. With a form-fitting costume and a lack of headgear, traditionalists and purists scoffed. Reaction was mixed, but a barrier was broken and in the following seasons, many other corps and high-level marching ensembles began to view costuming differently than they had in the past.
Also, on this video they are not BOOO-ing...
The 2017 Madison Scouts (DCI)
While 2017 was a difficult year competitively for the corps from Madison, WI, the Scouts blew a lot of minds with their costuming. Their visual presence was compelling, and they were one of the most talked about corps during the 2017 DCI season.
2017 Music City Mystique (WGI)
Shane Gwaltney and crew always break new ground with their innovative, inspiring, and sometimes challenging-to-the-viewer productions. Their "Hand of Man" production won the highly competitive WGI Independent World Class. To complete the look of this costume, their members had to literally shave their heads!
Click the image above for FloMarching's video on the show and costume backstory - it is worth the watch!
2017 Pride of Broken Arrow (Bands of America)
Broken Arrow never disappoints and can always be counted on to deliver the goods. If the band and color guard costuming doesn't do enough for you - they DRIVE GO CARTS IN THIS SHOW - where do I sign up?
The Cadets - 2017 (DCI)
The Cadets took Bernstein's Mass to a deeper level than previously performed on a football field. The musical significance of the piece is significant to the corps, and they wen't all-in with a more literal and dramatic production than in the past, complete with liturgical vestments and stained glass. The uniform evolved throughout the show beyond this clip, ending in a heavenly white/gold across the entire ensemble.
2017 Dartmouth High School (WGI)
This show takes the audience on a literal "Emotional Roller Coaster", and not only uses expressive costuming but also props and scenery as well.
2018 WGI Color Guards
Innovation has been the name of the game for several years in the indoor winter guard arena. Our good friends at FloMarching put together this fantastic montage of the leading guard ensembles from 2018.
You've got UNIFORM ENVY, RIGHT?
Uniforms and costuming on this level require planning, and FUNDING. Lots and lots of FUNDING.
Many ensembles around the country are finding it easier than ever before to generate large amounts of cash via the FansRaise platform. It's easy, there's nothing to sell, and the student participants "take the lead" in the campaign, making it easy for boosters to take a break, or independent ensembles to get a leg up on the season.
Ensembles around the United States are using FansRaise to raise more money quickly for things like equipment, instruments, uniforms, trucks, trailers - the sky is the limit.