The marching band event of the year for Historically Black Colleges and Universities (HBCUs) presented eight top marching bands with a national platform to display remarkable showmanship, precise instrumentation and carefully-crafted choreography, both live and streamed online. Each of the participating universities received grants to help fund and support their music education programs.
Highlights of the Invitational Showcase included a surprise performance by Alabama A&M alumnus Ruben Studdard, a show-stopping routine by the Alabama State Honey Bees and a special laser light show to commemorate the 15 anniversary celebration. First-time participant, Benedict College Marching Band of Distinction captured the crowd’s full attention with their powerful sound, even as the smallest band in the lineup. To conclude the display of dynamic musical talent, the final eight bands joined together on the field, over 1,600 musicians deep, for a captivating grand finale mass band medley.
For the third year, Honda honored an exceptional individual who has positively affected the lives of others in the community. Dr. N. Jean Hudley was named the 2017 HBCU Power of Dreams Award winner. Dr. Hudley is the founder of Boys2Men Home & Sanctuary for Youth, Inc. (B2M), a nonprofit organization created to help underserved young men ages 13-25. Dr. Hudley was presented with a surprise grant to support her future endeavors.
“Dr. Hudley’s work is a shining example of how fostering the dreams of our youth strengthens communities and makes our world a better place,” said Alexandra Warnier, Manager, Corporate Social Responsibility for Honda. “Honda’s long-standing partnership with the HBCU community is a testament to the power of dreams, and we’re proud to support the students that make this program such a success each and every year.”
More than 55,000 fans attended the Invitational Showcase. And with the help of the second annual HBOB live stream on CampusInsiders.com, the program expanded its reach to a global audience. #HBOB was the number two Twitter trending topic in the United States, helping to bring more visibility to the nation’s HBCUs.
This year’s Honda Battle of the Bands Invitational Showcase participants included:
- Alabama A&M University, Marching Maroon & White (Southwestern Athletic Conference) – 4th appearance
- Alabama State University, Mighty Marching Hornets (Southwestern Athletic Conference) – 5th appearance
- Alcorn State University, Sounds of Dyn-O-Mite (Southwestern Athletic Conference) – 3rd appearance
- Benedict College, Marching Band of Distinction (Southern Intercollegiate Athletic Conference) – 1st appearance
- Bethune-Cookman University, Marching Wildcats (Mid-Eastern Athletic Conference) – 12th appearance
- North Carolina A&T State University, Blue and Gold Marching Machine (Mid-Eastern Athletic Conference) – 5th appearance
- Texas Southern University, Ocean of Soul (Southwestern Athletic Conference) – 2nd appearance
- Winston-Salem State University, Red Sea of Sound (Central Intercollegiate Athletic Association) – 6th appearance
Honda now gears up for Honda Campus All-Star Challenge (HCASC), a unique academic tournament for HBCU students that showcases and recognizes their academic talents. The 2017 champion will be crowned at the National Championship Tournament in April. Visit www.hcasc.com for more details.
Honda has been committed to supporting the success and dreams of the nation’s HBCUs. Through initiatives like the Honda Battle of the Bands and Honda Campus All-Star Challenge Honda has been able to touch the lives of more than 120,000 students and award $12 million in grants in support of education programs.
Fans can check out HBOB’s 15th anniversary journey and highlights from the Invitational Showcase on the official HBOB social media channels:
- Facebook – Facebook.com/HondaBattleoftheBands
- Twitter – @The_Honda / Twitter.com/The_Honda
- Instagram – @the_honda / Instagram.com/the_honda
Honda seeks to be a company that society wants to exist, creating products and technologies that improve the lives of people while minimizing the environmental impacts of its products and business operations to ensure a sustainable future. Honda also is committed to making positive contributions to the communities where it does business, to socially responsible business practices and to the promotion of diversity in its workforce. From Honda’s involvement in STEM education and Historically Black Colleges and Universities (HBCU) to its support of pediatric brain tumor research and volunteer efforts by Honda associates – including environmental clean-up activities – Honda believes in giving back to the communities where its associates live and work. Learn more at csr.honda.com.