Music education hits the road

Apr 26, 2018

Travel Notes

A majority of our team of travel consultants started their careers in music education. From band to orchestra, choir to musical theater, our teaching veterans understand the impact music can have on students both in the classroom and beyond. Today, we’re going to talk about the importance of that “beyond” and share the ways we incorporate music education into every trip we plan.

Studies have shown that educational travel is much more than a standard teaching resource – it’s actually significantly more effective than traditional classroom instruction. Travel brings those classroom lessons to life in new, exciting and memorable ways for students. We’ve seen the value of these larger than life lessons most clearly through clinics and workshops,student performances, concerts and shows andthe opportunity for independence. Here’s how:

Clinics and workshops

Students engage with professional musicians and instructors on a completely different level than they do with the teacher they see every school day. There’s a sense of gravity that students experience during a workshop in Lincoln Center or Northwestern University that just can’t be duplicated in the classroom. Sitting across from a master clinician, learning a new technique or simply learning about that clinician’s experience as a musician is often the very moment that a student begins to dream about a career in music, education or travel. We enjoy the relationships we’ve cultivated with clinicians and instructors across the country and take every opportunity to weave this “day in the life” experience into our itineraries.

Student performances

The stage of Carnegie Hallcan’t quite compare to that of a high school auditorium. So the performances can’t be compared either. As student musicians take the stage in some of the world’s most renowned concert halls and venues, something transformative happens. To echo Tour Director Russell Marcason, the same students that were cutting up on the bus two hours ago, take the stage as adults – as musicians – ready to take direction and make music together. Those moments on the professional stage stay with students long after the applause ends. Whether they pursue a career in music one day or not, performing “professionally” changes young performers forever.

Concerts and shows

Sometimes the most impactful experiences on tour don’t take place on the stage, but rather from the audience. The Broadway shows, philharmonic concerts and other performances that students have the opportunity to enjoy on tour are almost always their first experience with live, professional theater or music. As they sit in the dark, holding their programs, small seeds of “what if” are planted. “What if I could play violin with the Chicago Symphony?” “What if I could play Eliza Hamilton on Broadway?” “What if I could be a Music Director?” We love hearing the stories of those “what ifs” that blossomed into musical careers for students we’ve traveled with. It’s why we do what we do!

Independence

Beyond the music, when students travel one of the best teachers is independence. Mom and dad aren’t there to remind you to be on time for rehearsal, remember your uniform or help you manage your money. Students grow up before our eyes on tour, as they realize that, most likely for the first time, they’re *almost* on their own. Students typically return home with more confidence, respect and responsibility.

The work that teachers and directors do in the classroom lays an incredible foundation for student performers. It’s our privilege to partner with educators to incorporate travel into the important work they’re already doing. Want to know more about the educational opportunities in your dream destination? Contact us and we’ll give you the details on the unique clinics, workshops, performances and venues in the cities we travel to. 

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