Help with setting up a proper parade block

Topics and polls that cover the overall marching band activity

Moderators: malletphreak, Hostrauser, instrumental director, Trumpet Man 05

Post Reply
Posts: 121
Joined: Wed Nov 27, 2002 9:52 am

Help with setting up a proper parade block

Post by royalbraz » Tue Oct 17, 2017 8:06 am

Hello, I need some help with setting up a proper parade block. Feel free to post a comment or send me an email. Here are my numbers:

16 Flute
20 Clarinet
3 Bass Clarinet
13 Alto Sax
3 Tenor
1 Bari
5 Mellos
14 Trumpets
6 Baritones
8 Trombones
4 Tuba
3 Snare
2 Quints
5 Basses
2 Cymbals
1 Bells
12 Guard

2 Drum Majors

User avatar
Posts: 706
Joined: Thu Nov 14, 2002 3:06 pm
Location: Gig Harbor

Re: Help with setting up a proper parade block

Post by supermutant » Tue Oct 17, 2017 10:58 am

Questions that you can answer to guide your block. What music are you playing? Do you have a particularly strong section? And do you have a weak section? Who are your strongest marchers? Do you want to guide center, left or right? Have fun and good luck, try a couple of things and see what happens. :viking:

User avatar
New Recruit
New Recruit
Posts: 58
Joined: Mon Nov 11, 2002 6:43 pm
Location: Riverside, CA

Re: Help with setting up a proper parade block

Post by DAC-1997 » Tue Oct 17, 2017 12:55 pm

It kind of depends on what kind of sound you are looking for. If you want a "show band" (think Macy's or Tournament of Roses) you will probably have all the brass up front, then percussion, then woodwinds in the back. If you want more of competitive parade block sound (SCSBOA) it will be more of a mix of instruments, parts and players. You may have to put them in a block and see how it sounds. Then move people around until you get the sound you want. Listen to them from up close and far away, and move around as you listen so you know what it sounds like in front, in back, and along side them.

I hope that helps a little. :)

Jim Bunselmeier
Posts: 472
Joined: Tue Sep 27, 2005 12:13 pm
Location: Chino, CA

Re: Help with setting up a proper parade block

Post by Jim Bunselmeier » Sun Oct 22, 2017 8:28 am


Is your parade block for everyone for a local parade or to compete with only the students who can play their parts? With the numbers you have if everyone marches go 9 across with the trombones and 1 baritone in the front rank. Rank two the rest of the baritones with a few trumpets. Rank three trumpets. I would then arrange saxophones and bass clarinets in the next rank or two followed by the sousaphones and mellos (beats and after beats. Right behind them percussion. If you are competing only one bass and one snare playing during the march. After percussion clarinets, then flutes and whoever didn't fit into ranks of nine.

This is a good starting point. Remember to listen to the march from the judges stand area and balance the group to what the judges will hear.

Post Reply