Total Adjudication at the Areas

Discussion in 'The Adjudicators' Comments' started by iancwilx, Jan 28, 2004.

  1. iancwilx

    iancwilx Well-Known Member

    I do hope that the Adjudicators at this years round of Area Contests intend to take their responsibilities seriously and grade EVERY band that comes under their scrutiny into the appropiate position according to it's ability in relation to the other competitors.
    A casual attitude towards the lower placings can have a devastating effect where gradings are concerned.
    The difference between a 7th and a 9th placing can be crucial.
    These days, the Adjudicator must be aware that he/she is not just employed to pick the bands that qualify for the National Finals - the job now is to grade EVERY band in that section as to its relative ability on that piece on that day.
    They had it easy in the old days, pick the top three and that was it ! - You have to earn your "Brass" these days lads !!!
  2. twm_trombone

    twm_trombone Member

    True....true....i've had the feeling once or twice at the area that our prformanced merited a bit more than 10 th and was given the feeling that after then top 5 had been chosen the rest where sloted in to fill the places.

    (Not ment to dis-credit bands who have got into the top 6 or 7!)
  3. Accidental

    Accidental Supporting Member

    The grading tables aren't exactly a new invention, so surely the lower places have always counted? Why do you think its different now? I went to a workshop with a "name" adjudicator, several years ago, who said he almost gave more time and thought to the bottom 6 placings than top 6 because he knew one duff result could see a band relegated. Some of them do have a bit of nouse after all! :wink:

    I can understand why people think its a lottery after the top few places, but isn't that part of the beauty of contesting? It is only the opinion of one or two guys in a box after all.
  4. iancwilx

    iancwilx Well-Known Member

    I assume that that you mean that to your knowledge at least one of them has a bit of nous !!

    Another thing - Have you ever received stunning "Remarks" extolling the virtues of every section and soloist, and congratulating the MD on his interpretation, and then been placed well down the list ?
  5. Lauradoll

    Lauradoll Active Member

    I'm sure I'm not alone in thinking that at every contest, someone will have a gripe about the results or where they've been placed. That is the point of having an adjudicator. It's his opinion that counts. If you are placed 7th then that's what you were worth in his/ her opinion. Whether or not you agree on it is a different matter. If you are relegated because of the placings is just life. Otherwise there would be no point in taking part in the contest. Contests aim to provide us with some sort of benchmark to compare ourselves against and itf we don't meet the mark, tough!
    May sound harsh but it is the real world after all.
  6. iancwilx

    iancwilx Well-Known Member

    You miss my point - Yes, I want the judges honest opinion and will gladly accept ANY placing that he/she considers our performance to rate.
    What I don't want is for after the last performance of the day, for the Judge to pick out the best remarks for the top four places, and just list the "also rans" in any order as if the lower placings are not really of any consequence.
    I am sure Judges have a very taxing and stressful "No win situation" job, and not many of us envy them - all I ask is that all placings, from 1st to last are carefully considered as the the lower placings are as vital as the winning performances.
  7. Accidental

    Accidental Supporting Member

    Yes, frequently, and not just at the areas. Its upsetting, but unfortunately thats just the way contesting works and imho we just have to live with it.
    If you don't have faith in most adjudicators to be doing this, and don't like getting duff results every now and again, perhaps you shouldn't bother contesting at all. Someone has to come last. :wink:
  8. bruceg

    bruceg Active Member

    For the areas I think it should be possible to come out with a ranking that accurately reflects the performance of the bands on the day. I think that this is possbile only because all of the bands in a section are playing exactly the same piece and the adjudicators have the chance to decide in advance what they are looking for throughout the piece (as well as listening, on the day, for tuning and intonation problems, interpretation and general musicianship).

    I believe that you're much more likely to get an accurate reflection of bands' relative performances from the area than from an own choice test piece or entertainment contest.

    At last year's Scottish area contest I felt that our band had been treated harshly until I listened to a recording later and matched it to the remarks. It resulted in us dropping a section but put me in the right frame of mind to get horrendously drunk - and I did! ;) :D
  9. iancwilx

    iancwilx Well-Known Member

    A bit late to stop now seeing as it's 43 years since my first contest !!!!
    (including winning the British Open - a LONG time ago )
  10. Lauradoll

    Lauradoll Active Member

  11. iancwilx

    iancwilx Well-Known Member

    I must admit that I do recall an occasion when I was in a band that won 1st Prize and in my opinion we didn't deserve it - I thought there were better performances than ours on the day - but of course, I'm not qualified to judge !!!!
    Either way, if you win, you celebrate, if you lose you drown your sorrows - - the pub ALWAYS wins !!!
  12. Lauradoll

    Lauradoll Active Member

    I agree with that!!!! :guiness
  13. BottyBurp

    BottyBurp Member

    Neither are a lot of adjudicators!!!! Personally, I think that the judges may get the first few bands right, and then throw the rest up in the air.

    But then, we all know the rules before we enter...
  14. WhatSharp?

    WhatSharp? Active Member

    I'd be more in favour of having two regionals a year, with the agregate top 3 going through.

    Sadly time and money prevent this from happening. Shame really since it would make more sense and be a far better way to measure a bands standard.
  15. jambo

    jambo Member

  16. bruceg

    bruceg Active Member

    Er... I thought I went on to say how in the very next sentence. It's only my opinion and I don't expect everyone, if anyone, will agree with it ;)
  17. eckyboy

    eckyboy Member

    Even great bands can get bad results--look at Newtongrange in the area last year so Dyke getting a bad result doesnt mean the systems wrong although it does make people sit up and wonder, if only because their favourites do poorly--A bit like when Scotland beat England at Wembley :lol:
    No Offence meant but it was the only finish I could think of :roll:
  18. eric

    eric Member

    Placings and points at the area contests have always been an enigma to me. Why is it that when a band wins an area contest they gain say 185 points and when they go to the finals they gain just 165. Have they suddenly become a bad band or is is it inconsistant adjudicators that have changed the standard for that day. Surely if the adjudicators were on the ball and the standards for judging the same throughout the country, we would see bands winning area's on 165 points or more bands tie at the finals in the 180's ?????
  19. MoominDave

    MoominDave Well-Known Member

    Isn't that because the standard is expected to be higher, and so the marks given for the same performance are proportionately lower? After all, playing at the finals is very much like moving up a section, and you wouldn't expect say a 2nd section 190 point performance to be given 190 points in the 1st section, would you?

    There is no way that marking on such a fine scale can be made consistent between adjudicators, other than perhaps providing marking schemes to the judges (50 points for this, 40 points for that, etc.), but still an element of subjectivity cannot be eliminated. This is why we have human adjudicators, rather than a mechanical box sitting there computing a total difference from a 'perfect' recording.

    I think it is widely accepted that the main value of the points given is to make clear the groupings of bands in the adjudicators mind - a bigger points gap (-d(points)/d(band), if you like...) is telling you something that the placings don't on their own.

  20. Accidental

    Accidental Supporting Member

    I get the feeling that most adjudicators figure out placings first, then fit the points in later - from how close to 200 the winners were, and then down from there, with gaps indicating where there's a bigger difference in standard across the section.

    Like Dave said, I think the points are more for illustration than anything else, and I sometimes wonder why they are awarded at all. If we accept that the results are based on subjective opinions, and the outstanding performances are as much about musicality and interpretation as the dots, a numerical "score" becomes pretty meaningless.