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Classification Breakdown for Winterguards

Updated: Jan 2


Below is a description of each class to help instructors make an informed decision about what class to register their groups in. We encourage you to read through and reflect on the current status of you and your students' abilities and goals. This post currently reflects the classes SVWAA offers, but can change as we grow.

 

SCHOLASTIC REGIONAL A BRONZE CLASS - All members attend the same school or feeder school. This class is designed for the most entry level performers of color guard. Units in this class are characterized by membership of no more than 25% of the total number of performers ever having any dance, guard, or performance experience. (Theater, band, choir, etc.) Show design and the generation of effect are very much less important than the development of primary technical skills and the introduction of expression. This class is reserved to allow these performers a positive emerging competitive experience in color guard, and to allow them to develop entry-level skills in a supportive environment. Only groups who are at the very nascent stages of training should declare this class. Performance skills in this class should not exceed doubles on weapons with basic toss/catch points, singles on flag, and basic dance skills. Equipment choreography should remain within the vertical and horizontal planes, with the exception of carves. Choreography will include ample recovery time between aerial and visual moments.



SCHOLASTIC REGIONAL A SILVER CLASS - All members attend the same school or feeder school. This class is designed for units that may have new performers, but also includes more than 25% of the unit with limited dance or previous color guard training. This class is designed for individuals to be somewhat more competitive than the regional A bronze class, but still working on the refinement of entry-level skills. Design and thematic efforts play a more prominent role than in the regional A bronze class, but still are at elementary levels. Groups who have had some exposure but limited training should declare this class. Dimensionality is very limited and phrases are primarily short (16 to 24 counts). Performance skills in this class should not exceed triples on weapons with basic toss/catch points, single 3/4 on flag, and intermediate dance skills. Equipment choreography emphasis should be in the vertical and horizontal planes, but allow for exploration of other planes. Choreography will include some recovery time between aerial and visual moments.



SCHOLASTIC REGIONAL A GOLD CLASS - All members attend the same school or feeder school. This class is designed for units that may have new performers, but may also include a majority of returning performers who have had some previous exposure to dance and/or color guard. For a competitive unit which is not ready for the demands of the A Class sheet. Equipment and movement will focus on the training and achievement of the basic skills. Tosses use a limited variety of release and catch points and typically take place from a stationary position. Flags are tossing up to doubles. Weapons will usually toss no higher than a triple as an ensemble, while soloists may demonstrate up to a 4 or 5 (limited to two performers.). Dimensionality is limited and phrases are longer in length (24 to 32 counts) with some built-in recovery time. Movement is mostly demonstrated by moving from place to place with a good range of gestural qualities being demonstrated. There is usage of simple turns and leaps and performers occasionally explore level changes around the body. Performers should demonstrate good examples of body awareness (posture, line, shape, weight) with very little change in dynamic qualities. Ensemble Analysis will display a beginning level of artistic effort that focuses on clear staging of the elements, logical progression of ideas (horizontal orchestration) and the basic use of the design elements. The triad (body, form, equipment) is never completely used with elements most often being presented singularly and occasionally presented two at a time. In General Effect, the concept and intent should be clear, consistent and moderately developed. Ideas should move successfully from one to another and the intent of the concept is not totally dependent on the role of the performers. Performer role, character and emotional development is evident but at a basic level with minimal changes. Units competing in this classification will be judged using the WGI “Regional A Class” criteria. Units that compete at WGI regionals in the Regional A classification MUST compete in the Regional A Gold class in SVWAA.



SCHOLASTIC A SILVER CLASS - All members attend the same school or feeder school. For a competitive unit which has exceeded the criteria of Regional A, but are not yet ready either through individual performance or design for the demands of Scholastic A Gold. Equipment and movement still will focus on the training and achievement of the basic skills but with more variety than the Regional A units. Tosses will display more variety of release and catch points with weapons usually tossing no higher than a quad, with soloists demonstrating higher tosses. There is more exploration of dimensionality of equipment and some layering efforts are beginning to occur. In movement, the range of dynamic qualities is expanding and exploring body responsibilities under aerial events. There is also expanded use of torso and level changes. There is more exploration of changes in weight, time and space and usage of expressive qualities is broadening. Ensemble Analysis shows a program with skills being demonstrated during the program. There is usage of two elements of the triad (body, form, equipment) simultaneously with occasional use of all three. In General Effect, the concept shows a use of artistic effort and a variety of methods for creating effect. Characterization is more developed and exploring of Scholastic A qualities is evident. Units in this classification will be judged using the WGI “A Class” criteria.



SCHOLASTIC A GOLD CLASS - All Members attend the same school or feeder school. For a moderately competitive scholastic unit which is not ready for the demands of Open or World Class. Guards in this area are at a level where members and staff have a complete understanding of the basic principles of performance and design. Tosses will display more variety of release and catch points with weapons usually tossing no higher than a 5, with soloists demonstrating higher tosses. There is evidence of dimensionality of equipment and layering efforts are evident throughout the program. In movement, the range of dynamic qualities is expanding and demonstrating body responsibilities under aerial events. There is also expanded use of torso and level changes. There is a clear understanding of changes in weight, time and space and usage of expressive qualities. There is often usage of elements of the triad (body, form, equipment) throughout the program. Units here may also explore more intermediate concepts that encourage performers and designers to broaden their skills. Ensemble Analysis shows a program with skills being demonstrated during the program. In General Effect, the concept shows a use of artistic effort and a variety of methods for creating effect. Characterization is more developed and exploring of Scholastic A qualities is evidentThere is moderate rehearsal opportunity and funding to develop this level of competitive program. Units competing in this classification will be judged using the WGI “A Class” criteria and will be encouraged to maximize the achievement of these criteria. Units that compete at WGI regionals in the Scholastic A classification MUST compete in the Scholastic A Gold class in SVWAA.



SCHOLASTIC OPEN CLASS - All members attend the same school or feeder school. For a highly competitive unit which is too advanced to find any competition in the Scholastic A classes, but is not ready for the demands of Scholastic World Class. Guards in this area have a greater experience level. Both staff and performers have the talent to grow beyond the basics, exploring a higher level of design and performance techniques. There is sufficient rehearsal opportunity and funding to develop this level of competitive program to benefit the students and broaden their performance skills. Units competing in this classification will be judged using the WGI "Open Class" criteria



SCHOLASTIC WORLD CLASS - All members attend the same school or feeder school. For the most highly developed high school programs. The designation World Class indicates the unit is competitive on the national level. This is the most advanced level of scholastic competition for guards with the student talent, design, staff, rehearsal time and budget capabilities to produce challenging and creative programs. Students here will be challenged to expand their technical and performance base to achieve their fullest potential within programs that utilize advanced concepts of design. Units competing in this classification will be judged using the WGI "World Class" criteria.


 

To view full classification breakdown information, please click the link below to view the 2022 WGI Adjudication Manual and Rulebook.


https://www.wgi.org/wp-content/uploads/2021/09/2022-WGI-Color-Guard-Adjudication-Manual-Rulebook.pdf


Written by: Stephanie Calonge, SVWAA Executive Director

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