Performance Tours for Drama Students: Travel to New York City and Toronto

Drama departments and drama clubs in high school and even junior high are filled with students who could benefit from a unique travel experience to a larger, more urban area, such as Toronto, or New York City. In these two North American cities, the Broadway theater district thrives. An international audience visits Toronto and New York City to see the newest, most popular Broadway plays and musicals.

New York City and Toronto: The Best of Broadway

As a student travel tour consultant, I have specialized in bringing theater groups on performance tours that include pre or post Broadway show workshops to enhance the theater going experience. These unique active learning experiences offer the perfect academic complement to an evening of theater in New York City or Toronto.

A High School Musical Tour to Broadway
Combine a trip to Broadway play or musical with a visit to an authentic Broadway Classroom Basic Workshop. In the past, students have seen such famous plays as Wicked, The Lion King, and Phantom of the Opera on Broadway in New York City or in Toronto. Prior to watching shows, Broadway actors and actresses describe and illustrate their professional, highly visible roles on Broadway and offer education and insight about the professional theater industry and their craft.

Active Learning for Educational Group Travel
Students learn a great deal in the Broadway Classroom Basic Workshops. In many instances, it is Broadway actors themselves teaching classes in Toronto and New York City. Students come to understand that work in professional theater has its rewards as well as challenges and demands. Student travel groups involved in drama departments or drama clubs gain an insider’s viewpoint on the theater community, and its inner workings, in these major cities.

Broadway Classrooms Basic Workshops Offered
for Student Travel Groups

Broadway Classroom offers excellent, hands-on theater workshops for the drama student or drama club participant.

Broadway 101
In this drama workshop, students will be given a fresh overview of the artistic, political, and social significances of Broadway Theater. They will come to understand the special training involved in becoming a Broadway actor or actress. Drama students gain valuable lessons in voice, storytelling, and focus/listening exercises in the Broadway 101 workshop.

Theater in Context
The subjects of Broadway plays and musicals are derived from many different cultures and time periods. Learning about the historic and literary periods that the Broadway show was created within assists a drama student to widen his or her perception of the work when he or she sees it performed.

Stage Combat
This safe, student friendly workshop illustrates the way in which fights and other forms of combat are staged in contemporary theater. Professionals show students how collaboration and spectacle combine to make combat seem real on stage.

Theater Sports
This workshop shows drama students and drama club members how to work as a team to communicate effectively and create great scenes. Students will learn about increasing focus and attention, activating their creativity, and attuning themselves to the sensitivities of others.

Attending a Broadway play or musical is an exciting event, for any student. Yet for a drama student or drama club member, Broadway can actually be a professional goal. By attending the Broadway Classroom workshops, the educator is encouraging student travel groups to attain this lofty goal, and grounding it in some reality. For many students, a real glimpse into behind the scenes of Broadway inspires the dream, and helps shape it for the future. Visit Educational Travel Consultants for more information on the performance tour to New York City or Toronto.

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Take a Student Travel Group on an Art Tour of Washington D.C.

Washington D.C., the nation’s capital, is a city known for politics. Yet is also distinguished for the museums and galleries that house some of the greatest works of art in the world. In addition to popular destinations in Washington D.C., artistic venues that showcase the best in international art offer a rich experience for any student travel tour.

Combining the Art Tour With Other Educational Opportunities
As the owner of a student travel company, Educational Travel Consultants, I have developed a special art tour of Washington D.C. This student travel tour includes the major points of historical and governmental interest. In addition to art venues, student travel groups will have the option to visit the U.S. Capital, Supreme Court, Library of Congress, Washington Cathedral, and take an Illuminated tour of memorials and monuments.

Following are a brief selection of art museums in Washington D.C. Student travel coordinators can select from this list, or a student travel tour can be customized to include other requested museums or educational destinations.

Freer Gallery of Art and Arthur M. Sackler Gallery
The Freer Gallery of Art and the Arthur M. Sackler Gallery in Washington D.C. are a part of the Smithsonian. The Freer Gallery has a collection that focuses on Asian and Mideastern art and also includes work from China, Japan, Korea, South and Southeast Asia, and the Near East. The collections also include American and Egyptian art as well as Biblical manuscripts. Educators may request resources for teachers by email: fsgasieducation@si.edu.

National Gallery of Art
The National Gallery of Art is perhaps one of the best-known collections of American art in the country. A student travel tour focused on art should definitely include this famous Washington D.C. museum and for good reason. The National Gallery of art boasts of being entrusted with the oversight of some of “our nation’s greatest cultural treasures” and is a great educational travel experience. From 2007 early 2008, exhibitions of Edward Hopper and Jasper Johns work are on display. Educator resources may be found at http://www.nga.gov/education/index.shtm.

Corcoran Gallery of Art
The Corcoran Gallery of Art in Washington D.C. is attached to one of the finest art schools in the city, Corcoran College of Art and Design. Conveniently located just across the street from the White House, Corcoran Gallery of art has American, European, contemporary art and photography and media arts in its collection. For educational resources for use in the classroom visit http://www.corcoran.org/education/class_material.htm.

National Museum of American Art
Housing a fine federal collection of American art, this museum is part of the Smithsonian in Washington D.C. The collection represents all regions, cultures and traditions in the United States and includes work by some well-known artists such as Georgia O’Keefe, Robert Rauschenberg, and Winslow Homer. To browse the educational resources available through the National Museum of American Art visit http://americanart.si.edu/education/resources/index.cfm.

National Museum of Women in the Arts
For a female and feminist perspective on art history, a student travel group will want to visit the National Museum of Women in the Arts. It is the only “museum in the world dedicated exclusively to recognizing the contributions of women artists.” The collection at the National Museum of Women in the Arts includes over 3,000 works of art created by women artists from the 16th Century to contemporary times. For educator resources, including slides and videos, visit http://www.nmwa.org/resources/edu_index.asp.

Other galleries to be visited include the National Portrait Gallery, Hirshhorn Museum and Sculpture Garden and the National Museum of African Art. Or, educators may customize student travel trips according to their needs. Visit Educational Travel Consultants for more information.

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Performance Tours for Student Travel Groups

At Educational Travel Consultants, our tour guides are specially trained to take performance groups on tour. We take pride in the fact that our tour guides are trained for performance groups. When my full time profession was education, part of my duties included oversight of a student choral group. This is where I first got to know these types of students very well.

After 24 years of coordinating and executing student travel tours, I can say that the musical and performance group tours are some of the most exciting, and complex tours we produce.

A performance group has different needs than a regular student travel group. At Educational Travel Consultants, we cater to this need. First of all, many are taking instruments along on tour with them. These instruments need to be accounted for prior to arrival at the airport. A list of carrying cases, instruments, and unusual dimensions must be collected by the tour guide prior to the trip in order for instruments to travel well and reach their intended destination.

A tour guide assigned to a performance group must have special skills. Not all tour guides possess these skills. But, it is my belief that a tour guide must be trained well, in order for the trip to go smoothly. When hiring tour guides for performance tours, Educational Travel Consultants looks for the following skills, or trains tour guides with aptitudes for these duties. These include: coordinating the set up of the performance group, an assessment of the room allocated, electrical, instrument, amplifier, and microphone placement, and the position of keyboards and larger instruments on stage. The tour guide must also be trained in how to work directly with the bus driver, so he or she can make certain that the parking and unloading location selected is appropriate for movement of instruments, equipment and students.

Educational Travel Consultants brings these value added services to our student travel groups because we know that assigning selected staff and providing proper training are key to the success we have with student performance tours.

Email info@educationaltravelconsultants.com if you would like more specific information on ETC performance tours.

Washington D.C. and Williamsburg Virginia: A Time to Tour

There’s never been a better time to sign up for a combination tour of Washington D.C., Williamsburg and Jamestown.

Washington D.C. is a great learning experience for student tour groups because students get to observe our government in action. Student travel groups can also stop at historical points of interest such as Arlington National Cemetery, Mount Vernon, and the Pentagon, for even more insight into U.S. history.

Just a mere 2 hours south of the Washington D.C. metro area, Williamsburg Virginia awaits. A visit to Williamsburg and Jamestown helps students to envision the settlement of the colonies hundreds of years earlier.

This year, Jamestown celebrates its 400th Anniversary of the English settlement, in 1607. Jamestown’s 400th anniversary is characterized by numerous keynote events, and is being celebrated throughout the Southeastern Virginia area even outside of Williamsburg and Jamestown.

But the most exciting development for student tour groups in 2007 is the enhancement of exhibits at Jamestown Settlement and at Colonial Williamsburg.

In preparation for the anniversary celebration, Jamestown Settlement underwent renovations and large additions were made to the new visiting center. This new state-of-the-art visitor center has interactive exhibits for the active student learner. Students may visit a replica of an Indian village, and board the three ships that took the English to Virginia: the Susan Constant, the Godspeed, and the Discovery. Inside the museum, real documents and artifacts surrounding the settlement of Virginia are on display.

Colonial Williamsburg has always excelled at presenting living history programs that appeal to the student traveler. Depictions of the heyday of Virginia’s second capital, Williamsburg, include narratives developed from historical documents that include the perspectives of women, slaves, Native Americans, criminals, and more.

Find out how your travel group may schedule a tour of Washington D.C., Williamsburg and Jamestown. Email info@educationaltravelconsultants.com and an educational travel professional will get right back to you.

Adjudicated Music Festivals in Orlando, Washington D.C., and New York City

One of the objectives of some educational travel may be to perform with a musical instrument or voice and compete in front of judges. Also known as the adjudicated music festival, a performance with a final judging may take place in a college auditorium or an arts performance venue with excellent acoustics, or a public venue with these facilities. A band, choir or jazz ensemble is not performing for a crowd, but judge(s) who have backgrounds as college music professors or high school band or orchestra directors who are well-respected in the profession.

Various student tour groups benefit greatly by embracing this experience. Junior High, Middle School and High School Choirs, Concert Bands, Orchestras, Jazz ensembles and parades all seem to derive a great deal from the adjudicated music festival experience. After the music festival is judged, students tour groups attend a dinner where awards are given, and they are publicly recognized for their work.

Popular Music Festivals Venues in Orlando Florida
Since it’s the location of Disney World, Orlando Florida offers some attractive venues for music festivals. After the adjudicated music festival performance, enjoy Universal Studios, Islands of Adventure, MGM Sudios, Epcot Center, or the Magic Kingdom.

Popular Venues for Adjudicated Music Festivals in Washington D.C.

For students visiting Washington D.C., there are many outstanding adjudicated music festival performance opportunities to choose from. A professional educational travel consultant can help a student travel group identify a music festival that is appropriate for your band, orchestra, choir, jazz ensemble, or more.

High School Musical Tour Dates in New York City
Some notable performance venues in New York City are available to student travel groups. These include the Statue of Liberty, United Nations, and Lincoln Center.

High School Musical Tour Combined with Theme Parks

Sometimes groups attending adjudicated music festivals request a combination of competition and fun on their tour. These student travel groups may arrange to hold the awards ceremony in a theme park setting. Other groups tend to hold their awards ceremony for the adjudicated music festival in a hotel ballroom, or at a dinner show.

The theme park setting for an awards ceremony naturally appeals to students because of the fun involved. The theme park adjudicated music festival tour appeals to the high school and junior high age groups, where many are likely to participate in Mixed Choir, Concert Band, Orchestras, Jazz Ensembles and Parades.

For many bands, orchestras, choirs or jazz ensembles visiting Orlando Florida, the Disney High Musical School Tours offer the type of experience they are seeking.

Outside of Washington D.C. student travel groups may visit Kings Dominion, North of Richmond, or Six Flags Great Adventure in Northern Virginia to complement the adjudicated music festival experience.

For student performance groups traveling and performing near New York City, Six Flags Great Adventure in New Jersey is a great place to visit and hold an awards ceremony.

Educational travel tours are enhanced by adjudicated music festival performances. But some groups would rather perform and not be judged by a formal committee. For these groups, the non-adjudicated music festival will work well. Whatever your travel group’s needs are, visit http://wwwEducationalTravelConsultants.com for more information about adjudicated and non-adjudicated music festival performance tours and venues.

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Performance Tours for Educational Travel Groups

For the high school or junior high school band, orchestra, jazz ensemble or choir, an educational field trip is even more desirable if it includes a public performance for an audience. There are several components that must come together for a great performance tour. Selection of an experienced educational travel company is key to the performance tour’s success. There must be a performance venue set-up and the educational travel group must have permission to travel to and set up at the venue well in advance. The rest of the time the student tour group will be engaged in seeing some of the sights A good educational travel consultant will know exactly where to bring the student group.

Size of Performance Tour Groups
Compared to other student travel groups, the performance tours can be almost four times larger. For example, a normal size for a performance tour group is 80-100 or even as many as 200 participants, whereas the average high school travel tour is comprised of about 40-50 students. Large performance tour groups require one tour guide on each bus. Though some educational travel companies only provide one tour guide for approximately three to four buses, my company standards require one guide per bus.

Traveling by Plane with Musical Instruments
The educational tour company must have a list of instruments in order to make certain they all make it to the chosen destination. Students participating in the travel tour should provide the weight and dimensions of each instrument to the educational tour company and note oversized cases. The educational travel consultant will coordinate where the musical instruments need to be delivered at the airport, usually through cargo.

Desirable Skills and Abilities for Educational Travel Consultants on Performance Tours

A student tour group on performance tour should select the educational travel company carefully. It is highly desirable for the educational travel consultant to be experienced at bringing high school, junior high and middle school choirs, concert bands, orchestras, jazz ensembles, and more on performance tour.

There are several key functions a good tour director will execute on a performance tour and these include: directing the bus driver to park the bus at the proper location for unloading, dropping off a large student travel group, and finding the key person who works at the performance venue for collaboration. Specific on site functions include: coordinating the set up of the performance group, an assessment of the room allocated, electrical, instrument, amplifier, and microphone placement, and the position of keyboards and larger instruments on stage. If the staff of the educational travel consultant’s company possesses these skills and is cross-trained for marching bands, the company is ideal for any performance tour group. Educational travel consultants train professional staff specifically for performance tours and marching bands. Other companies need to provide this in order for performance tours to go smoothly, too.

Student travel groups on performance tour have different objectives, needs, and challenges than educational travel groups on tour for academic growth and enrichment. Although traveling with musical instruments is a concern, it is only one of the challenges a tour director may face on performance tour.

The best idea for any school group is to retain an educational travel consultant with experience in working with choirs, concert bands and orchestras, jazz ensembles and other types of musical performance groups that can be found in middle, junior high, and high school environments. By retaining seasoned educational tour professionals, the performance tour is bound to be a smashing success that educational tour groups can look forward to year after year.

Washington D.C. and Williamsburg Jamestown Yorktown Tour: How to Make it All Work

If an educational travel group is bound for Washington D.C. and the educators wish to expand that group’s exploration of our nation’s history, a visit to Virginia is in order. Just 2 ½ hours south of Washington D.C. by bus, Early American history awaits in Colonial Williamsburg and Jamestown Settlement.

In 2007, Historic Jamestown celebrates its 400th Anniversary of the settlement of the English Colonies. This year kicks off many living history programs that explain the early colonial era from diverse perspectives. Even after 2007 is complete, many of these educational programs and exhibits will stay in place so the student traveler may learn from them, even if they do not make their visit during the 400th anniversary year.

The challenge for any educational travel company is how to make all of these destinations work for one student travel tour. For a four to five day tour, it takes advance planning and coordination to include educational tour highlights of Washington D.C. and Williamsburg & Jamestown in one tour — with many participants.

Here are some of the highlights I include in my company’s student travel tour of Washington D.C., Williamsburg & Jamestown:

Washington D.C.
Student travel groups enjoy a guided tour of the complete Washington D.C. area that includes sites such as The Capitol, The White House, the Lincoln Memorial, Supreme Court, National Archives and more. Students may also visit sites in Northern Virginia such as Mount Vernon and the Arlington Cemetery. As with all of our student travel groups, accommodations are in three diamond interior corridor suburban hotel, with 24-hour security provided.

Williamsburg Virginia
After two days of touring the Washington D.C. area, students embark on a short 2 ½ hour journey to Williamsburg Virginia to experience the colonial era with living history on the educational program. The Colonial Williamsburg complete sightseeing tour will include a visit to 18th Century historical buildings such as the Capitol and the Courthouse, the Public Hospital of 1773, Raleigh Tavern, and the Peyton Randolph House.

Jamestown Settlement Virginia
Jamestown Settlement is a recreation of the first English settlement in Virginia, Jamestown Island. Student travel groups will see replicas of the ships that made the journey from England: the Discovery, the Godspeed and Susan Constant. They will enter a living history exhibit of an Indian Village, and see a recreation of James Fort, where the colonists first lived. This interactive approach to history, called living history or even active learning by some educators, is a great way to engage students in learning about the colonial era.

The educational student tour of Washington D.C. and Williamsburg/Jamestown is balanced by fun and educational experiences. Students benefit from a guided tour of Washington D.C. and historic Williamsburg and living history educational programs at Jamestown Settlement. With this approach to educational travel, students are given a great learning experience as well as a trip to remember for a lifetime.