USBands Creates All-Star Lineup

With a new name, a new webinar series and a new All-Star Marching Band opportunity, USBands presented by the Cadets (formerly USSBA) is off to an exciting 2012.

Every other Wednesday through June, directors and instructors can gain valuable insights from Cadets staff members during one-hour interactive webinars.

“We plan to provide an animated presentation with examples of what to do—and what not to do,” said George Hopkins, CEO of YEA!, parent organization of The Cadets and founder of USBands, in a press release. “Be prepared to learn more in our action-packed hour than in a month of marching band methods classes.”

Each session is $10, and participants can register online at Webinars are available streaming on demand for two weeks after they air. Topics have or will include show programming with Hopkins, brass technique with Gino Cipriani, battery percussion with Colin McNutt, front ensemble with Iain Moyer, amplification and electronics with Gerry Miller, visual design with Jeff Sacktig, color guard design and costuming with Greg Lagola and Bruno Zuccala, and more.

“We’ve seen hundreds of examples either in our own program or the marching bands we’ve evaluated, where things have gone wrong or at least have had unintentional outcomes,” Hopkins said. “What’s more important than the lessons learned winning World Championships are the lessons we learned when we did not.”

For the first time ever, USBands will put together an All-Star Marching Band with 300 of their 70,000 performers to march in the nationally televised Disney Parks Christmas Day Parade. Unlike other all-star groups, this one is based on peer and parent nomination submitted on

“We have an immense pool of talent from which to draw our members for the All-Star Band,” said Melissa Barlow, project manager for the USBands All-Star Band in a press release. “By asking peers and parents to nominate the students who excel in their band, we’re putting the selection process in the hand of those who know the performers best.”

The All-Star Band will spend three days and four nights at the Walt Disney World Resort, filled with clinics, rehearsals, an awards banquet and free time in the Disney theme parks. Special travel packages for parents and families as well as chaperone opportunities are also available.

For more information on nominations, registration and fees, visit the website

About author

Elizabeth Geli

Elizabeth Geli is the assistant editor of Halftime Magazine and a journalist/communications professional in Southern California. Her 11 years at the University of Southern California (USC) Trojan Marching Band included time as a flute player, graduate teaching assistant, and student advocate. She holds a bachelor's degree in Print Journalism and master's degree in Specialized Journalism (The Arts) from USC.

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