Winter guard is the sport of indoor color guard - much like your traditional color guard that performs with marching bands - we just take the performance indoors and perform to recorded music. Innovation Winterguard is entering its third year and comprised of students in upper elementary, middle, and high school. The group learns movement and a variety of equipment including flags and sabers. Winter guards can be found in middle schools, high schools, universities and independent organizations.
We are excited to be a part of the FFCC – the Florida Federation of Colorguards Circuit. They offer a competitive outlet during winter for color guard, indoor marching percussion, concert percussion, and winds. Our competitive season begins in January and culminates in our Circuit Championships the last week of March.
How to Join/Request Information for 2021 - 2022 Season
2021 - 2022 Season Information
Membership is available to all students 7th through 12th at Innovation Montessori Ocoee, Innovation Montessori High School, Legacy High School, and Ocoee High School
*Audition is required. Audition criteria include technical excellence, expression, attitude, performer potential, and commitment. Additional information coming soon!
- Days: TBD
- Time: TBD
- Fees: TBD includes FFCC fees, costume, equipment
Innovation Winterguard Audition Information
FAQ on Auditions
Q: How will the auditions work?
A: Each applicant will participate in both dance and flag technique classes. A portion of the audition will also include technique for saber. All classes will include choreography. You’ll have several opportunities to demonstrate your abilities, experience, training, and attitude.
Q: What will the staff look for during the audition process?
A: The audition sessions will focus on introducing our style of movement and equipment techniques. Participants will formally audition in small groups using dance and flag choreography taught in the sessions. The staff will also conduct personal interviews in order to learn more about the participants. Audition criteria include technical excellence, expression, attitude, performer potential, and commitment.
Five Requirements for Innovation Winterguard Membership
Talent - The instructional staff will evaluate your abilities on your instrument/equipment, your movement ability, your development and progress over a period of time based on specific criteria as outlined in the audition material.
Fees & Payments - You need to demonstrate willingness and ability to fulfill the financial commitment as described in the audition information packet. We expect payments to be made in a timely manner. Any difficulties in adhering to the payment schedule must be discussed with Innovation Winterguard management.
Attendance - You will be expected to attend all rehearsals and performances. When you attend an Audition Experience event, you should discuss with the staff any known events that conflict with rehearsal or performance dates. If you have a critical family or school conflict with a rehearsal, notify Innovation Winterguard management as soon as you become aware of the issue. If we don’t hear from you, we consider the absence unexcused, which could negatively impact your membership status. You will need to clear your winter calendar of all conflicts.
Attitude - You will need to maintain a positive attitude in challenging circumstances. The hours are long, and the work is hard. You will be asked to do things that you’ve never done and work harder than you probably ever have. Your ability to stay positive and focused will help you and those around you meet the challenges you’ll face.
Health - You must be physically, mentally and emotionally able to withstand the rigorous requirements of practices, performances, and travel. A complete health history and sports physical are required. If you have ANY doubts about this program, please discuss your concerns with corps management and medical staff.
DON’T BE AFRAID TO CHALLENGE YOURSELF – YOU CAN DO THIS!
Director and Artistic Design: Kristen Janke
Kristen marched in color guard for 8 years. She performed with Florida Visual Ensemble for two years earning a Winter Guard International gold medal in Independent A competition. Then, Kristen performed with The Company based in Seminole, Florida. She received a gold medal in Open Class competition and a 5th place finish in World Class competition. Kristen is thrilled to help bring Winterguard to IMO. Our inaugural year was a lot of fun! Kristen has three children who attend IMO.
Designer/Choreographer: Suzanne Newland
Suzanne marched in color guard for 5 years, placing 9th in scholastic open class at WGI, and leading her team as captain. She currently has two children who attend IMO and was excited to join the instructor team in 2018.
Creative Design/Staging: Michael Caruth
Michael is the Founder of Innovation Montessori in The Arts! and Director of Bands and Music Enrichment for IMO. He has enjoyed being a musician for over two decades performing in numerous ensembles including marching band, jazz band, wind symphony, winter guard, drum corps, and college band. Michael began his teaching experience as a visual and winds performance technician for the nationally recognized Upper Darby High School Marching Royals (Pennsylvania) before joining the visual teams for the Jersey Surf Drum and Bugle Corps (New Jersey), and Newark High School Winter Guard (Delaware). Outside the music world, he enjoyed his time as a trainer and facilitator for numerous companies including LensCrafters and The Walt Disney World Company. Michael has performed on several instruments including clarinet, bass clarinet, baritone saxophone, baritone/euphonium, drums, and as a member of his high school winterguard. He traveled the country for 4 summers as a lead baritone player and small ensemble soloist for the Crossmen Drum & Bugle Corps. Most recently Michael was the director of IMO's production of Beauty and the Beast, Director of Camp Lakewood, and served as music director, producer and stage manager for Aladdin JR. He is entering his fifth year as music director with IMO and has a wife of 23 years, and a son and daughter attending West Orange HS where they are members of the West Orange Warrior Band, recently named a Blue Ribbon Program of Excellence by the National Band Association.
Innovation Montessori in The Arts Combined Calendar
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The Florida Federation of Colorguards Circuit (FFCC) offers a competitive outlet during winter for color guard, indoor marching percussion and concert percussion teams and Winds. Our competitive season begins in January and culminates in our Circuit Championships in early April.
The FFCC offers a variety of competitive classes ranging from the first year unit to the seasoned competitor. Our contests follow the rules and criteria of Winter Guard International (WGI) and are judged by both local and national judges trained to use WGI’s adjudication criteria.
Our Mission: To promote positive educational experiences through the competitive arena via the indoor pageantry arts.