Today, the Anne Arundel County High School Battle of the Bands has announced the conclusion of the annual Annapolis-based event, after 17 consecutive years at Maryland Hall for the Creative Arts in Annapolis.
Founded by Nancy Almgren in 1999 as a way to expose County residents to talented musicians from all of the area high schools, the event became the largest event of its kind in the nation, as schools sent their best rock band to perform annually, in front of sold out crowds of enthusiastic county residents.
Each year, all proceeds were donated to the music departments of the top 4 high schools. Over the course of the 16 year program, The Anne Arundel County High School Battle of the Bands raised and donated $110,150, all while affording over 851 high school musicians a chance to perform in front of more than 14,000 patrons.
This past January, No Capes from Broadneck High School were victorious in the final installment of the event, taking home bragging rights, recording time, performance opportunities and the largest donation for their school. This year, $7,000 in profits was distributed amongst the 4 winning schools.
“Citing increased logistical challenges in coordinating the various entities involved in this event, as well as a variety of other personal and professional considerations, we feel like this is the time to wrap up what has been a tremendous run for our program,” remarked Nancy Almgren, Founder and Director.
Danny Mays, the organization’s Assistant Director, and longtime emcee notes that “producing Battle of the Bands annually is a significant time commitment, undertaken by a small group of super dedicated volunteers. This doesn’t even touch the 50+ volunteers who take on annual roles, closer to show time. Assisting in producing this show has been a tremendous honor, but also a tremendous time commitment.”
The event became an Anne Arundel County tradition for participants and patrons alike, relying on the support of local and national businesses for sponsorships and advertising. Numerous past performers have gone on to have successful careers in the music industry. Most recently, 2011 winners Sun Club signed a record deal and have embarked on several successful international tours. Performing the same year, Have Mercy is now signed to Hopeless Records and is performing all summer on the Vans Warped Tour. Bassist, Nick Woolford, returned to serve as a judge at this past January’s event.