The effect of video and audio recordings of concert band performances on adjudicator evaluations

Christian Michael Zembower


The purpose of this study was to investigate differences among adjudicator evaluations based on two conditions: (a) The presentation of concert band performances through video recording, and (b) the presentation of concert band performances through audio recording. Ten high-school concert bands (two small-sized ensembles, five medium-sized, and three large-sized) were randomly selected from the Indiana State Concert Band Finals. Fifteen experienced wind band conductors (13 White males and two White females) from universities in the United States participated as adjudicators in this study. Of these 15 adjudicators chosen, five were randomly selected to participate in the video-tape evaluation of this study (Group One); five were randomly selected to participate in the audio-tape evaluation (Group Two); and five were randomly selected to participate in both video-tape and audio-tape evaluations for this study (Group Three). Using a researcher-designed evaluation form, adjudicators rated each concert band's performance in terms of tone quality, intonation, technique/proficiency, rhythm, balance, and interpretation/musicianship/effect. The adjudicators in each evaluation group listened for one hour to portions of performances of the 10 high-school concert bands; adjudicators in Group Three evaluated separate media presentations one week apart. An independent t test, a factorial ANOVA, and a "nested design" ANOVA were used in analyzing data. The results revealed significance in the main effects of media presentation (F = 23.42, df = 1, p = .00) and ensemble size (F = 10.82, df = 2, p = .00), and significant interactions between bands and judges (F = 2.79, df = 45, p = .00), and between media and judges (F = 1.26, df = 5, p = .02). No significant differences existed in the overall mean scores between adjudicators in Group One (video) and Group Two (audio) (t = 2.11, df = 7.042, p = .07). Although significance was found between groups in certain test results, the differences in the presentation of media did not seem to greatly affect judge score consistency. In light of these findings, it was concluded that visual and aural stimuli can positively or negatively affect an adjudicator's evaluation, thus causing wide ranges and contrasting scores in certain evaluation categories across the judging panel.