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Eric Molho

Sounds of Minnesota Winter Edition in S. St. Paul Saturday

By | MBI Winterguard | No Comments

The curtain is ready to rise on the 2016 MBI Winter Guard performance season as the ensemble hosts Sounds of Minnesota Winter Edition this Saturday, Feb. 6, at South St. Paul High School.

The event is expected to feature 14 units from around the region competing in six classes. Showtime is 6:30 p.m. Doors open at 6.

MBI Winter Guard—whose 2016 show is titled “Auto-Correcting Society”—placed first last weekend in the Independent A Class at the North Star Circuit’s annual season-opening Scholarship Show in Mendota Heights. “MBIWG had a strong start to the season at the Scholarship Show,” said director Wil Furnstahl. “The performance was well received by both audience and judges.”

The group has been an Independent A Class unit since 2011, when they were moved up to Open Class after their performance at the Indianapolis Power Regional resulted in an 11th place finish at the WGI World Championships event. MBI Winter Guard is a consecutive two time WGI Independent Open Class Finalist and the 2012 Kansas City Regional Independent Open class champion.

The 16-member MBI Winter Guard is co-directed by Furnstahl and Emily Merriman for their sixth consecutive season and a staff that includes returning members Jessi Foell, Jon Su and Mary Stennes. New staff members include Jared Peterson, Aaron Shaleen, Rachel Graack, Becci O’Kane and Dani Lovitz.

Sounds of Minnesota Winter Edition
When: 6:30 p.m., Saturday, Feb. 6
Where: South St. Paul High School, 700 2nd St. N., South St Paul, MN 55075
Admission: $8-$6. All seats are general admission and available at the door.

MBI Winter Guard ‘virtually’ ready for 2016 season

By | Drum & Bugle Corps, MBI Winterguard | No Comments

It’s a digital world today, and we’re all just connected bits and bytes.

That somewhat dystopian view is the theme of MBI Winter Guard’s 2016 show, “Auto-Correcting Society,” that will see its debut performance Jan. 31 at the Scholarship Show at Henry Sibley High School in Mendota Heights, Minn.

“Our soundtrack this year surrounds a voice-over narrative that aims to define how our devices, apps and technology have changed human interaction and society as a whole,” explains Wil Furnstahl, MBI Winter Guard director. He adds the show was inspired by a spoken-word art performance. “We loved the message and felt it was so relevant to both our members and audiences alike.”

Furnstahl describes the visual aspect of the show as “a colorful world comprising squares and rectangles that are reminiscent of the device screens with which we surround ourselves every day. The shapes also appear within the costuming, along with digitized pixilation patterns in our flags. The show continuously presents a motif of individuals stopping to stare at their hand (which is in the shape of one holding a phone) as the chaotic world continues around them.”

The 16-member unit is co-directed by Furnstahl and Emily Merriman for their sixth consecutive season and a staff that includes returning members Jessi Foell, Jon Su and Mary Stennes. New staff members include Jared Peterson, Aaron Shaleen, Rachel Graack, Becci O’Kane and Dani Lovitz; all in all, it the largest staff ever to work with the guard, Furnstahl said.

“We are happy to have Mary, Rachel and Dani as program alums,” he added, “and feel it’s important to keep alumni actively engaged and involved.”

Furnstahl said the guard will appear in six local shows including its home show, “Sounds of Minnesota: Winter Edition,” on Feb 6 at South St. Paul High School. The guard will once again compete nationally as they travel to the WGI St. Louis Regional contest in March and the WGI Color Guard World Championships in Dayton, Ohio, in April.

For more information about the MBI Winter Guard’s 2016 show and performance schedule, go to https://mnbrass.org/winterguard.

System Blue Partnership Announced

By | Drum & Bugle Corps | No Comments

Minnesota Brass is pleased to start 2016 with a new endorsement of System Blue brass instruments.  Designed by the corps’ brass music arranger, John Meehan, all-new System Blue equipment will debut in the upcoming season.

SystemBlue_STACKED_PMS280_resized medium“We’re thrilled to partner with System Blue and provide these world class instruments to our members,” said Eric Molho, executive director of Minnesota Brass.  “The endorsement of this equipment provides new opportunities for our organization and supports our ongoing pursuit of excellence in all aspects of our operations.”

On the heels of winning the DCA Horn Championships in 2015, Minnesota Brass’ partnership with System Blue will showcase the new brass instruments in 2016 and continue their pursuit of excellence for Drum Corps Associates highest honor.

With its far-reaching artistic and educational influence, System Blue’s partnership with Minnesota Brass hopes to further the success of the drum corps and help them to achieve excellence in the DCA arena.

“Minnesota Brass will bring a profound energy to the System Blue family,” says Systems Blue’s President, David Gibbs, “and we are excited to have them onboard.”

This highly collaborative partnership will allow both partners to grow stronger together. Minnesota Brass is a big-ticket in the DCA marching world and is a dynamic endorsee that brings talent and extensive experience. With partnerships as such, the future is bright for both organizations. Together, we grow.

Come Soar With Minnesota Brass

By | Drum & Bugle Corps | No Comments

“Now Boarding,” the 2016 production from Minnesota Brass began its journey on Saturday, January 2 during our audition camp in Brooklyn Center.  Even if you missed takeoff on Saturday, you can still print your boarding pass at home to join us on the next leg of our trip.  Horn and percussion auditions continue on Wednesday evening, February 10 at Brooklyn Center High School.  Our departure time is 6:30 p.m.  Bring a friend and pack comfortably for an evening rehearsal including music and movement.

New Horns; New Battery; New Front Line!

By | Drum & Bugle Corps | No Comments
At their December meeting, the Minnesota Brass board of directors approved the purchase of an entire new set of brass instruments for the corps to begin using in the 2016 season!  Our new horns are scheduled to arrive this Spring and will be ready for all of our uniformed performances this season.

In addition, Minnesota Brass is excited to announce the continuation of our long-standing relationship with Dynasty USA for our battery and front line percussion equipment  Our arrangement with Dynasty allows the drum corps and Minnesota Brass Indoor to perform on all new battery equipment each season.

In 2016 the corps will also be replacing our entire line of percussion keyboard equipment through Dynasty USA including an entire new set of Bergerault, Rosewood marimbas, Bergerault vibes and a Bergerault pedal glockenspiel.  This equipment is currently being manufactured in France for Minnesota Brass in time for our 2016 performances!

The 70th Anniversary season for Minnesota Brass begins on Saturday, January 2, with auditions for horns and percussion.  Register now!