PORTLAND – More than 100 high school musicians in 27 bands from across the state will compete to be this year’s “Best Young Band in the State of Maine.”

This is the 20th annual Reindeer Rock-Off, which takes place at McAuley Performing Arts Center Sunday, March 28; Saturday, April 3; and Sunday, April 4, beginning at 1 p.m.

The bands include Past Insanity from Lisbon High School; Wilshire and The Mojo Cafe, both from Mount Ararat High; Fedora Vista, Monmouth Academy; and Specter, Leavitt Area High.

Reindeer Records, a Portland-based indie label, produces the annual event. About 60 bands have responded to this year’s sign-up call, said producer Louis Philippe. “Registration criteria for the Rock-Off is intentionally more challenging and based on industry standards,” he said. After going through the entries, they ended up with the 27 bands.

Each band will be judged in three major categories: live showcase performance, original material and marketability.

The finals will beSunday, May 2. The winning band gets $1,000.

All shows are open to all ages. General admission per showcase is $8 in advance, $10 the day of the show. Advance tickets are available from any participating band, by calling Reindeer at 878-4554 or by e-mailing [email protected]


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