A near capacity crowd rocked the Georgia Dome at the 2016 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.
Ok now, @TheLincolnU! We see you! #orangecrush #hbob pic.twitter.com/WPti0gKlbK
— HBOB (@The_Honda) January 30, 2016
Breathtakingly difficult formations defined the 2016 performances, including a #1 sign from Bethune-Cookman and an eye-of-the-storm hurricane from Prairie View.
Yup #hbob that just happened in your face . pic.twitter.com/bprJXDJrRU
— Marching Wildcats (@bcuwildcats) January 30, 2016
Prairie View Marching Storm blowing through with a powerful hurricane formation #HBOB pic.twitter.com/BkZ7jvdoXI
— Tarrence ATU 007 (@atu_strong007) January 30, 2016
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.”
The 2016 Honda Battle of the Bands 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
Other 2016 Honda Battle of the Bands highlights:
- 2016 Honda Battle of the Bands featured eight top marching bands delivering dynamic performances in front of a near sell-out Georgia Dome crowd
#HBOB hits number two Twitter trending topic in the United States and #4 globally bringing incredible visibility to the nation’s HBCUs
- Honda awarded more than $200,000 in institutional grants to participating colleges and universities
- For the first time in its history, HBOB was live-streamed on Campus Insiders, reaching all 50 states and 40 countries
- Hometown legend Ludacris returned to HBOB to perform for the second time; Musiq Soulchild made a surprise guest performance
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 California this April for the 27th annual HCASC National Championship Tournament. The 2016 champion will be crowned live on April 4 on www.hcasc.com.
Through HBOB and HCASC, Honda has awarded more than $10 million to support music and educational programs at America’s HBCUs.