Ronald E. Childs
Eight of the Nation's Top HBCU Marching Bands Deliver Show of a Lifetime before a Crowd of Nearly 60,000 at the 2011 Invitational Showcase
(BLACK PR WIRE) TORRANCE, Calif.--(BUSINESS WIRE)--The ninth annual Honda Battle of the Bands Invitational Showcase delivered on its promise to bring the ultimate party with a purpose to the people, offering a little something for everyone – from “Hip-Hop’s very own “Bow Wow” in live performance, to spirited marching band renditions of the latest chart-topping soul, R&B and Hip-Hop hits. Atlanta’s WVEE Radio evening drive-time host, Ryan Cameron, introduced the bands, while “Bow Wow” treated fans to a special performance of “Ain’t Thinkin’ ‘Bout You,” from his new album, Underrated.
The 2011 Invitational Showcase, themed “Hollywood Lights,” featured a mass band performance medley of music in film, as nearly 60,000 HBCU friends, fans, students and alumni from all parts of the country made their annual pilgrimage to support their favorite bands. This year’s Showcase bands included: Albany State University, Bethune Cookman University, Clark Atlanta University, Jackson State University, South Carolina State University, Tennessee State University, Virginia State University and Winston-Salem State University.
Strengthening HBCU Music Programs
The Honda Battle of the Bands not only showcases the pageantry and showmanship of HBCU bands, but also and more importantly, acts as the nation’s only HBCU music scholarship program of its kind. The eight bands selected to participate in the Invitational Showcase were awarded $20,000 each for their music scholarship programs, plus an additional $1,000 grant for their participation in the Celebration Tour, the Honda Battle of the Bands’ pre-qualifying event. In all, a total of $205,000 in scholarship money was given to HBCU music programs this year.
“American Honda is humbled to continue for a ninth year as founder and principal sponsor of this one-of-a-kind event,” said Marc Burt, senior manager, Office of Inclusion and Diversity. “It’s gratifying to us that this program stands as the only such national scholarship program, and that it truly enables talented young student-musicians to realize their dreams and achieve their academic objectives.”
The FOX MUSIC EXPERIENCE, sponsored by Fox Diversity Development and Fox Music, is a unique music internship/immersion program that exposes HBCU student musicians to the broader world of music and entertainment. The program, which launched in 2008, offers one lucky Honda Battle of the Bands Invitational Showcase student musician the opportunity to spend one week in the summer working on the Twentieth Century Fox studio lot in Los Angeles learning film and television music production first-hand. This year’s winner is Devin Michael Barkley, a senior from Clark Atlanta University. Barkley is the lead drum major, a percussionist and trombone player. He plans to pursue a graduate degree in music. When asked how it felt to be named this year’s Fox Music Internship winner, Barkley said, “The only way I can describe it is like when you win the lottery, I don’t think it has really hit me yet. I can’t wait to experience whatever they have in store for me.”
Recruiting Generation Next
For the sixth year in a row the Honda Battle of Bands also hosted an HBCU Recruitment Fair on Saturday morning before the main event. Designed to expose young people to opportunities offered by Historically Black Colleges and Universities, the Recruitment Fair allows prospective college students to meet with marching band and admissions recruiters to discuss admissions requirements and scholarship opportunities. This year, 37 universities exhibited and nearly 5,000 young people attended.
For more information on the Honda Battle of the Bands Invitational Showcase, Fox Music Experience summer internship program and HBCU Recruitment Fair, photos, press materials and video footage visit www.HondaBattleoftheBands.com, the official online destination and clearinghouse for all HBOB information.
American Honda Motor Co., Inc., was founded in 1959 as the U.S. sales and marketing subsidiary of Honda Motor Co., Ltd. Honda currently produces automobiles, motorcycles, all-terrain vehicles, lawn mowers and engines at its nine major U.S. manufacturing operations, using domestic and globally sourced parts. Honda’s long-standing commitment to the support and success of the nation’s Historically Black Colleges and Universities began more than 20 years ago with the establishment of the Honda Campus All-Star Challenge, a program designed to showcase the academic gifts and prowess of HBCU students. American Honda established Honda Battle of the Bands nine years ago as an effort to support HBCU music programs.