If 1A numbers need to drop down at state then there must be an 'area' contest.
Isn't the point of the state process fair and equal representation to see who the best is in the process?
TMEA, which is a different beast, was sure to change alotment for state chairs based on how many students are auditioning per region into area for the all-state process. This same process should be used as model into how 1A advances. If area isn't available then why not look at the number of 1A bands at each region and set state representation based on entries. Eight 1A bands at region then 5 could advance with a first division. Three 1A bands and only 1 can advance. It's a thought to help balance the process.
1A needs to be treated the same as 2A-6A and not denied the opportunity to advance based on how many bands earn a 1st division at region marching contest. This would be equivalent to saying we take the top 3 bands from region and they go to state for each classification. Show me where any band director 2A-6A would be happy with that outcome.
The advancement of 1A bands to state has improved the quality of small school band programs. I look back at recordings four years ago to this past year and the change is remarkable.