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California Blasts Off: Burbank Blast Preview

Updated: Jun 12

The first major competition of the West goes down this Saturday at Burbank High School. Here are all the storylines and schools to watch!

Intermediate Free For All:

With nine groups in intermediate mixed and six groups in intermediate treble, the intermediate divisions will be absolute chaos. The California intermediate groups tend to be very talented but a bit inconsistent year-to-year, which makes these huge divisions that much more fun. Nobody knows who might take down the top spot, but a bit of guesswork can be done on who the top contenders may be.

For the mixed groups, I would look to Los Alamitos Connexion, John Burroughs Sound Waves, Oceanside Soundwaves, and Eisenhower Ike Singers to challenge for the top spot. The former three groups have been a bit more consistent than other groups, and are contenders year after year. Eisenhower Ike Singers has been dominating novice competitors with a win streak of four going into this week. It remains to be seen how they’ll stack up against the higher division, but evidence suggests that they’ll show well.

In the treble division, Los Alamitos and John Burroughs will again look to take home the top prize, but an interesting contender may challenge for placements and captions. Diamond Bar High School’s Solitaire had a very strong showing at Esperanza last week, winning the scoring against Glendora’s Silhouettes but losing on a brutal three-and-a-half minute time penalty. Solitaire will be fired up and gunning for a rare division win.

All About That Bass:

One of the most interesting things about Burbank Blast this year is its massive bass division. Five bass groups at one competition is almost unheard of. The competition likely won’t be super fierce, with the only real question being whether Diamond Bar Radiant, Hart Unleashed, or Cypress Voltage Unlimited will take home the coveted 3rd place spot. John Burroughs’ Men@Work will likely continue their dominance of the bass division, and Los Alamitos’ Xtreme will probably follow up in the second slot. Despite the obvious scoring outcomes one would assume, these shows will be anything but predictable. May the funniest group win!

Here Comes Treble:

The advanced treble divisions will have a nice variety of competitors. It’s hard to see any group besides Los Alamitos Xquisite taking home the win in Tier II, but stranger things have happened. Hart’s Hartbreakers are phenomenal dancers and Brea’s Spellbound sounded amazing at their pop show, and it will be interesting to see how those two shake out against one another. In Tier I, it’s a classic Los Al vs Burroughs matchup. Sound Trax and Sound Sensations will battle it out once again, and who can say what group will come out on top this time?

Main Event Coin Toss:

The advanced divisions at Burbank Blast will be an absolute dogfight as usual. In the Tier II division, all four groups have a case to be made for that number one spot. Hart Sound Vibrations killed it at their last showing at Esperanza, winning Showmanship and second place, while Diamond Bar Marquis had to swallow a finish at the bottom of the division in fourth. The battle between Marquis and Sound Vibes has been an epic one post-pandemic, and it's impossible to tell whether Hart will fend off the reeling Diamond Bar varsity group, or if Marquis’ loss last week will jump-start them into a strong second showing.

Let’s also not forget about the other two Tier II competitors, Jackson Prep Reveillon and Brea Olinda Masquerade, who will also be fighting for the top spot. Prep has had a disappointing season in their Mississippi circuit, but you can never count out an out-of-state group at their travel competition. Masquerade is another respectable group that is hungry for a win after a somewhat disappointing season last year. Brea’s program is growing and getting back to where it was, and there is certainly a chance for a big step up in this contest. In Tier 1, we have a tale as old as time. Two of the best show choirs in the world, John Burroughs Powerhouse and Los Alamitos Sound FX, are the lineup. This is as even of a matchup as it gets, and the show choir world will be watching intently. A bit of research would suggest that Los Al will take show and Burroughs will take music, but in terms of placement, it’s anyone’s guess.

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