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6 th Annual
Late Nite HP SM Bitter Jester ® Battle of the Bands!
Battles every Friday night in June culminating in
the top four bands competing for CA$H on the 4th of July!

Battle Structure:
FRIDAY NIGHT BATTLES: Two to four (2-4) bands will battle every Friday night
in June at Port Clinton Square, 600 Central Avenue in downtown Highland Park. Friday Night
Battles start promptly at 9:00 pm with arrival/setup at 8:00 pm. Judges placed in the audience
will determine each Friday Night Battle winner.
Judges will rank each band and a single band will be chosen at the end of each Friday
Night Battle. In the event of a tie, the two tied bands will each perform a single song of their
choosing (a coin flip will determine the order) and the audience will then choose the band to
proceed to the Semi-Finals by way of applause and cheers (judges will make the call).
4th OF JULY SEMI-FINALS: The Friday Night Battle winners will proceed to the
Semi-Finals on July 4, providing live entertainment prior to the City of Highland Park’s annual
fireworks celebration. Judges on the 4th of July will again be placed in the audience. The job of
the judges on the 4th is to narrow the four (4) semi-finalists down to two (2) finalist bands to
proceed to the Final Battle that same night.
4th OF JULY FINAL BATTLE: The two (2) finalist bands will then each perform a
single song of their choosing. The audience at the concert will then determine the ultimate
winner by way of applause and cheers. PICKING THE WINNER: The winner will be
determined based on the reading from the official Bluegrass Restaurant Decibel Meter.
Judging Criteria:
Judges will score all battles based on a composite of the following evenly-weighted
criteria: 1) Overall Sound & Sticking to the Time Limit (ending too early is as bad as ending
too late); 2) Musicianship & Solos; 3) Rhythmic Accuracy/Groove/How Tight the Band Plays
Together; 4) Interpretation (stylistic feel); 5) Freshness, Originality, & Creativity; 6)
Appearance/Attitude, Showmanship, & Audience Appeal; and 7) Vocals & Lyrics. All things
being equal, more weight will be placed on original music and/or lyrics than on cover songs,
though a healthy mix of both is never discouraged. Bands performing only covers should focus
on audience appeal, sound quality, interpretation of the music, and overall musicianship and
musical skill. In other words: showcase your talent and the content becomes less relevant.
Judges are appointed at the sole discretion of Bitter Jester Creative and all decisions of
all judges are final. It is the official policy of the Late Nite HP Bitter Jester Battle of the Bands
that Judges do not share their scores or notes with anyone.
Application & Registration Fee:
There is a one-time non-refundable registration fee of $20.00 per band. Send check
and application to: Bitter Jester, PO Box 1824, Highland Park, IL 60035-7824 – NO CASH!
Awards & Prizes:
Friday Night Battle winners will be publicly recognized on the 4th of July with a
certificate stating that they won their Friday Night Battle. After the Final Battle, the winning
and runner-up bands will receive certificates stating their respective accomplishments as well as
a money prize of $400.00 and $200.00 respectively. All prize money is generously provided by
the City of Highland Park. Some paperwork is required prior to claiming the prize.
While the support of parents is very much welcomed and encouraged, parents are
not allowed back stage on the 4th of July. No exceptions. We appreciate your cooperation!
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Band Info – Please fill out and return with your signed agreement!
Band Name: ______________________________________________________________

School(s) and City/Cities Represented: ________________________________________

Will you ave CD’s for sale on the 4th of July (please check one): Yes ____ No ____

Band Website (if you have one): ______________________________________________

Did you remember to enclose your $20 Registration Check?


0) Stanley Stankowich 847.123.4567 / cell Drums & Vocals

Description of Band’s Musical Style (and anything else we should know):

Detailed Diagram of Band’s Layout & Placement of Performers/Instruments:


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The City of Highland Park, Late Nite HP, & Bitter Jester Creative, Inc. Will:
• Provide an outdoor venue/electricity for all Friday Night Battles and on the 4th of July;
• Provide judges for all Friday Night Battles and on the 4th of July;
• Provide an MC to introduce the bands during all battles and a Production Manager to
coordinate the 4th of July sound checks, Semi-Finals and Final Battle;
• Provide a professional sound stage, mics, amps, and any/all other required equipment
for the 4th of July Semi-Finals and Final Battle (i.e. not on any Friday Night battles);
• Provide cash prizes totaling $600 and the ability for bands to promote themselves;
All Entering Bands Will:
• Commit to performing in Highland Park, IL on one (1) Friday night in June;
• Agree to hold the date of July 4th open from noon until the start of the fireworks, should
they be selected to proceed to the Semi-Finals (i.e. band members must be available to
sound-check and perform on the 4th of July in Highland Park in order to battle in June);
• Provide any/all required sound, musical, amplification, and/or other necessary
equipment for their Friday Night Battle only – bands are encouraged to communicate
with each other in order to consolidate and coordinate their equipment needs);
• Arrive no later than 8:00 pm on their Friday night and agree to stay until after the
Friday Night Battle winner is announced;
• Have permission to promote themselves widely on the 4th of July as well as to sell or
give away CDs, etc. at any time during any of their performances or around town;
• Dress and act in an appropriate manner at all times, remembering that judging is based
as much on professionalism and demeanor as it is on musical skill as an ensemble;
• Provide Bitter Jester Creative with all band member’s contact information and other
band-related information using the form on the previous page;
• Pay a one-time non-refundable registration fee of $20.00 to Bitter Jester Creative, Inc.
to cover administrative and marketing costs;
Rules & Regulations:
Each band will be allowed to perform for twenty to twenty-five (20-25) minutes at their
Friday Night Battle and, should they win their Friday Night Battle, for exactly twenty (20)
minutes on the 4th of July. As this is a city-sponsored event and open to the public, all musical
content and lyrics and the appearance and behavior of all participants should reflect the highest
standards. Entering bands are welcome (and encouraged) to perform at other Late Nite
HP venues on any Thursday, Friday, or Saturday night this summer or at any time
throughout the year. Questions, comments, or feedback should be sent to Daniel Kogan via e-
mail at
*Circle your 1st choice performance date: June 3 June 10 June 17 June 24
*Circle your 2 choice performance date: June 3 June 10 June 17 June 24
List any June Fridays you will NOT be able to perform: _______________________________
*While every effort will be made to honor your requests, we cannot guarantee perfect placement

I, ____________________________ (print your name), have read and fully understand all
pages of the above rules, regulations, and requirements of the Late Nite HPSM Bitter Jester®
Battle of the Bands and hereby agree to abide by them at all times:

___________________________________ ___________________________________
(name of band) (contact signature and date)
(signatory must be at least 18 years old to or have a parent or guardian sign in their place)