Preferred Name

Ben Frenchak

Creative Commons License

Creative Commons License
This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-Noncommercial-No Derivative Works 4.0 License.


Date of Graduation

Fall 2016

Document Type


Degree Name

Master of Music (MM)


School of Music


William M. Dabback

Scott Rikkers

Lisa Maynard


The 1920s National School Band Contests and the 1980s Virginia Band and Orchestra Directors Association’s state marching competition followed parallel paths as music educators involved in each event wrestled with the value of competition and its implications in education. Various tensions over the competitive aspects of the events led to revisions that ultimately changed their purpose to assessment-oriented festivals. The purpose of this historical study was to investigate the events surrounding the National School Band Contest of the 1920s and 1930s; document the creation, administration, and evolution of the Virginia Band and Orchestra Directors’ Association (VBODA) statewide marching assessment from 1980-1985; and to compare the two events, evaluating the process of how both went from the format of a competition only event to that of a ratings only festival. Findings from the study may foster additional research that can be used to analyze the effects of competition and assessment on high school musicians.

Previous Versions

Dec 15 2016



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