Prospect Marching Knights host Knight of Champions competition

Knight of Champions Rehearsal
By Tallyn Owens
Staff Writer
The Prospect Marching Knights (PMK) held the 14th annual Knight of Champions Marching Band Competition this Saturday at Prospect. Despite the rain, competing classes A and AA, the smaller-sized bands, performed outdoors. However, the class AAA competition, containing the largest bands, was moved to the Jean Walker Fieldhouse, because of inclement weather.
According to senior drum major Mary Kate Banks, “from one 30 yard line to the other 30 yard line [on the field] was complete mud,” which is why the rest of the competition was moved indoors.
Once in the Fieldhouse, class AAA bands didn’t have enough space to march, but were judged on other aspects of their performance including music dynamics and tone, general effect, percussion and auxiliary performance, which is color guard.
Over 25 bands from as far as Davenport, Iowa traveled to perform for 10 esteemed judges from the Chicagoland area. Prospect Band Director Chris Barnum expressed the importance of Knight of Champions, saying that it’s one of the band’s biggest fundraisers and draws many area bands.
Winners in class A were Niles West in third, Lincoln-Way West in second, and Wheaton Warrenville South taking first place. In class AA, winners included Davenport Central in third, Waubonsie Valley in second, and fellow District 214 school, Wheeling in first. In class AAA, Naperville North finished third, Hersey second, and Lake Park High School finished first in their class, in addition to taking nearly all the caption awards.
As a host band, PMK performed last, but did not formally compete. They were judged for their own knowledge, but weren’t ranked or scored against the other schools.
Banks felt that because they were hosting the competition she was more relaxed, which led to a quality performance.
PMK also recently traveled to Louisville, Ky. to compete in the Bands of America Super Regional Championships on September 26. Among the competition were 20 of the nation’s best bands. The Marching Knights placed fifth after preliminaries, but finals were cancelled due to stormy weather in the area. Barnum states that despite the lightning, it was “a really good weekend for the band.”