top of page

© 2018 Fairfax High School Bands All Rights Reserved


What is a band competition?

It is a gathering of high school marching bands performing their halftime shows under strict rules and time limits, hosted at a high school or college. Awards are given. Bands are usually judged on criteria such as musicality, uniformity, visual impact, artistic interpretation, and the difficulty of the music and drill (steps or movement). To make competitions fair, bands are normally split into different classes or divisions. The number of band members determines the class—with the largest bands being Division I, and smaller bands being classified as Division II, III, and IV. FHS Marching Rebels are a division, group or class 1 or 2. Here is a link to the VMBC

Are competitions mandatory?


Why are they so long?

Each competition is different. Competitions can be an all-day or late into the night event. All band members and volunteers arrive at school early enough, before departure time, to load the buses and the equipment truck. The band must arrive at the competition at least 2 ½ hours before their performance time to allow for unloading the buses and equipment trailers, changing into uniforms, stretching, warming up and walking to the gate of the stadium with all instruments, PIT equipment, and props. Often, after they perform, they watch other bands and wait for the awards ceremony. During this time the percussion equipment and props are loaded into the equipment trailers by the student trailer loading crew (and some parents). After the awards, everyone returns to load the buses to return to FHS. A detailed schedule is created and shared with all band families before each competition.

How does the band travel to the competition?

By bus, school or  coach buses.

How do the band members know which bus to get on?

A bus seat assignment sheet will be posted in the band room before the first competition for students to sign-up for which bus they want to be on. The bus assignments are the same for all competitions.

What if my student wants to change buses?

A bus change must be approved by Mr. Buchroeder.

What does a band member bring on the bus?

Their complete uniform, hat, gloves, instrument and accessories. Most instruments go under the coach bus along with the garment bags. Most items are carried onto a school bus and large instruments are stored in the trailers.  For color guard, competition uniform, show uniform, makeup, accessories and after performance uniform, change of shoes. Depending on the travel time length, snacks, pillow, blankets, cards.

bottom of page