In today’s world, especially within the last year, we have experienced so many uncertainties. We have had to stop and restart our seasons. We have gained and lost members and have had to just take life day by day, especially at the high school level. What the administration says goes! It’s a very uncertain feeling for the guard members and for the staff who are just trying to hold things together to give their performers a great experience.
In many areas of the country, it has been a huge challenge just to get members in a gym. If you did have that opportunity, many found it difficult trying to get great technique back into the performers. Members had to learn choreography and staff had to setup a show to be performed in only a few weeks. Not to mention budget cuts.
Like all designers and instructors, we also wanted the performers to have a great experience without compromising on the quality and integrity of the NICE THINGS (flags, floor tarps and props) that we typically are able to get during a regular season. We wanted them to have something they can be proud of and to bring some normalcy and joy into their lives.
To that end, who you decide to work with for your equipment flags, floor tarps and props is something that you should take into consideration. Working with the right company can literally make or break your end result. Many companies act simply as the middleman and do not actually produce or have control of the production process. They typically farm products to another company to actually produce. Not having control of the production process, quality checks or special consideration for schedules can be very frustrating.
When looking for a reliable, respectable company to work with, consider the following:
- Do they have staff on hand that has direct involvement in the activity?
- Do they have graphic designers that do more than just plop an image into a template?
- Do they take a genuine interest in your show and offer free consultation to explore how you can enhance your show in ways that you may not have considered?
- Do they have access to other performing arts genres?
- How connected and flexible are they to meeting your deadline and scheduling the production process to meet that need?
Developing a relationship with a company and individuals within can truly help bring your vision to life. Over time those relationships that develop become invaluable. Honesty, Integrity and Trust, Some call it the “Yes…but…” factor. While you may pay a bit more for something, the relationship and additional insights that are provided far outweigh that difference.
To provide the greatest experience for your performers and program, develop those relationships and don’t be afraid to ask for input and suggestions. Chances are what comes out of it will far exceed your vision.
Alexander Scott Perez
Alexander has been involved in the Marching Activity for over 25 years. He started his marching career as a contra player for the Boston Crusaders in 1999. He has worked with the Braddock Independent Winter Guard, Micro Magic’s Japan touring cast, Carolina Crown, and later Aging out of the Boston Crusaders color guard.
Alex has taught groups both in the USA and internationally. Groups that he has worked with include: Stoneman Douglas H.S., Cypress Bay, Black Gold, FIU winter guard, Summerville, White Knoll, Sebastian River, The Cadets, Magic of Orlando, Salem Blue, University of South Florida, UCF Pegasus, Jupiter H.S., Fusion World, Santa Clara Vanguard, West Broward H.S, St. Joseph H.S. in Malaysia
Alex currently works as a full-time barber in Wilton Manors, Florida. He still finds time to give back to his first love, Color Guard. He continues today to work as a designer, choreographer, and technician. Alex and his teams rely on Field & Floor FX to bring their vision to life.