63,000+ Celebrate HBCU Marching Band Excellence at Honda Battle of the Bands

ATLANTA, Jan. 30, 2016

/PRNewswire/ —

A near capacity crowd rocked the Georgia Dome at the 14th annual Honda Battle of the Bands (HBOB) Invitational Showcase. The annual marching band event for Historically Black Colleges and Universities (HBCUs) provided eight top marching bands with a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity to deliver a dynamic performance on a national stage, while earning grants and positive attention for their respective institutions.

Highlights of the Invitational Showcase included dynamic mixes of music new and old, and dance choreography on a whole new level. Despite being one of the smallest bands and a first-time participant, the Lincoln University Orange Crush Roaring Lions dazzled the crowd with a bold performance and unique trumpet solo. Breathtakingly difficult formations defined the 2016 performances, including a #1 sign from Bethune-Cookman and an eye-of-the-storm hurricane from Prairie View. For the first time in Invitational Showcase history, in addition to a mass band featuring nearly 2,100 student musicians, all eight drumlines performed to close the show.

During the event, Honda honored Ms. Barbara Andrews, a middle school teacher and South Carolina State University alumna, for going above and beyond to support her students and community. In addition to supporting her own students, Ms. Andrews has raised awareness of lupus, a chronic autoimmune disease, and supported South Carolina State University students impacted by the illness. As the 2016 Honda Power of Dreams Award winner, Ms. Andrews was presented with a surprise $15,000 grant on the field to support her dream of establishing a scholarship fund so students and families don’t have to choose between school and their medication.

“Ms. Andrews’ selfless dedication to her students, to her Alma Mater and to those in need is a true example of the spirit and strength of the HBCU community,” said Steve Morikawa, Vice President, Corporate Relations and Social Responsibility, American Honda. “Honda has supported the nation’s HBCUs for more than 25 years, and is proud that so many fans joined us to celebrate student musicians and academic excellence.”

This year’s HBOB participants included:

  • Alabama A&M University, Marching Maroon & White
  • Alcorn State University, Sounds of Dyn-O-Mite
  • Bethune-Cookman University, Marching Wildcats
  • Jackson State University, Sonic Boom of the South
  • The Lincoln University (PA), Orange Crush Roaring Lions
  • Prairie View A&M University, Marching Storm
  • South Carolina State University, Marching “101”
  • Tennessee State University, Aristocrat of Bands

Honda now turns its attention to Honda Campus All-Star Challenge (HCASC), a unique academic tournament that has impacted the lives of more than 100,000 HBCU students across 22 states. Student teams representing 48 HBCUs will gather in Southern Californiathis April for the 27th annual HCASC National Championship Tournament. The 2016 champion will be crowned live on April 4 onwww.hcasc.com.

Through HBOB and HCASC, Honda has awarded more than $10 million to support music and educational programs at America’s HBCUs.

Cherie S. White
Cherie S. White
Cherie S. White is Director of Digital Strategy for the Tom Joyner Foundation, a writer and editor.

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