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Carnegie Hall: An Unforgettable destination for Educational Student Travel

Make Music History the Theme of Your Next New York City Student Tour

Opened in 1891, Carnegie Hall has hosted many of the world’s greatest soloists, conductors and ensembles. Premier classical performances, jazz events, historic lectures, educational forums and more have been featured for more than a century. Carnegie Hall actually consists of three separate music halls created specifically for acoustics, audience size and atmosphere. The Isaac Stern Auditorium is the largest hall with seating for 2,804 people. The hall’s design makes the stage the central focal point of five levels of seating and the acoustics are famous across the globe. Isaac Stern, the hall’s current namesake, was once quoted saying, “It has been said that the hall itself is an instrument, it takes what you do and makes it larger than life.” Carnegie Hall is also home to the Joan and Sanford I. Weill Recital Hall, an elegant, intimate space for approximately 268 people, as well as the Judy and Arthur Zankel Hall, which was recently reconstructed and seats 599.

A NYC Field Trip for Music Lovers

Sanford I. Weill, the Chairman of the Board for Carnegie Hall, once said, “For music lovers worldwide, Carnegie Hall is the ultimate musical destination, an international byword for excellence, and an institution whose rich history chronicles the defining moments of so many of the world’s most admired and beloved artists. For the leadership of this institution, this legacy provides an enjoyable yet formidable challenge, as we work each season to devise strategies that build upon the past in imaginative ways and create essential new pathways for growth.” The brilliance, imagination and talent Carnegie Hall nurtured and inspired over the years has changed the face of music and continues to touch audiences of all ages today.

Make Your Student Tour a Success: The 2008-2009 Season at Carnegie Hall
Carnegie Hall has created an exciting and unforgettable 2008-2009 season featuring over 200 events including:

–Almost 160 orchestral, chamber, and recital performances
–Over 40 pop, jazz, folk, and world music concerts
–Events presented by Carnegie Hall’s Weill Music Institute

The season also features 27 world premieres, 6 US premieres, 20 New York premieres and 2 festivals celebrating American music:
–30 events are part of Bernstein: The Best of All Possible Worlds
–Approximately 20 events will be held as part of Honor! A Celebration of the African American Cultural Legacy

NYC Student Tours Celebrate American Musical Heritage
Bernstein: The Best of All Possible Worlds
Bernstein: The Best of All Possible Worlds brings Michael Tilson Thomas, leading the San Francisco Symphony, and soloists Thomas Hampson, Yo-Yo Ma, and Dawn Upshaw together at Carnegie Hall in an all-Bernstein program. The Bernstein festival is presented in partnership with the New York Philharmonic and celebrates the extraordinary achievements of the late Leonard Bernstein. Bernstein was and still is one of the most important international musicians of the 20th century and was known to be ‘a quintessential New Yorker.’ Student travel and high school musical tours to this festival are encouraged, especially for students studying music.

Honor! A Celebration of the African American Cultural Legacy

Opening in the spring of 2009 and curated by world-renowned soprano Jessye Norman, Carnegie Hall calls Honor! A Celebration of the African American Cultural Legacy a salute to, “the enduring vitality, influence, and creativity of African American music.” This festival explores gospel, jazz, classical, rhythm and blues and spiritual music and pays tribute to music pioneers in venues throughout New York City. Educational and community programs are also part of the festival. The Carnegie Hall National High School Choral Festival will be presented and a curriculum for middle school students teaches about the connections between African American music and U.S. History. Carnegie Hall’s Rose Museum hosts an exhibition about the captivating history of African American artists and socio-political figures that have appeared at Carnegie Hall over the last 118 years.

Additional New York City Student Tour Opportunities
In addition to this season’s festivals, students will have the chance to see a variety of other important performances and attend a multitude of workshops on an NYC educational travel tour to Carnegie Hall. Acclaimed conductor and pianist Daniel Barenboim holds a series of 15 events. Tabla virtuoso Zakir Hussain is showcased in 5 events. Legendary composer Gyorgy Kyrtag visits NYC as part of a two-week celebration of Hungarian music.

If NYC field trips are part of your 2008-2009 school year, see music history first hand on a student tour to Carnegie Hall.

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New York City: Student Travel Favorites: Shopping, Dining, & Entertainment

Dining, shopping and entertainment activities in New York City are educational experiences for student travel groups. New York City was formed by an immigrant population, and still retains these national identities in some neighborhoods such as Chinatown and Little Italy. While many student travel groups originate from small towns across America, these places do not often have the ethnic diversity of New York City. So even touring the city streets in Manhattan can be an educational experience for many.

For this article, I wanted to discover what some of the more popular choices for dining, shopping and entertainment were among student travelers in NYC. I have interviewed one of Educational Travel Consultants’ licensed NYC Tour Guides. Karen Goodman belongs to the Guide Association of New York, where “Guides go on various tours that are sponsored by the Association to keep us up-to-date on new happenings in the city.”

Following is a compilation of some of my own best picks for dining for student travel in NYC, along with Karen Goodman’s thoughts on shopping and entertainment.

Student Tour Groups Can Shop in Times Square
A student group tour of New York City should include shopping visits that are convenient to historic or arts districts students are already visiting. “Broadway is a popular destination for student groups and also a great place to pick up some souvenirs,” said Karen Goodman. “Students can purchase NYC t-shirts, and baseball hats for a NYC ball team or NYC police or fire departments. The Times Square area is filled with these sorts of stores.”

Shopping on Fifth Avenue in New York City

Students enjoy shopping on 5th Avenue, which is convenient to the Rockefeller Center area. Saks 5th Avenue is in the vicinity, as well as Saint Patrick’s Cathedral and Trump Plaza. “More than anything, student travelers seem to love to visit a food vendor or purchase a scarf or shawl from licensed street vendors,” said Goodman. So, shopping on 5th Avenue does not always have to be decadent, it can still be simple and pragmatic and fit the student budget.

Student Travel Groups Shop in Chinatown
Goodman observed that students love to go shopping in Chinatown. “There is a strong ethnic feel,” she says. “Some things are written in Chinese. The streets are windy and not on a grid like other parts of NYC. Student travelers love to purchase the costume jewelry, sunglasses and hats that are available in Chinatown,” added Goodman.

Dining Out In New York City With Student Travelers
Eating out in a city on the scale of New York can be a great adventure. Student groups request Hard Rock Café and Planet Hollywood, because they are widely known.

I recommend ethnic choices for food to many student groups. We all have our favorites. I like to take student travel groups to Jewish delis, out for real Italian food, or to a Chinese restaurant.

My two personal favorite Jewish Delis are the Stage Deli and the Carnegie Deli. At these authentic New York delis students are astounded by sandwiches with one pound of meat. The overlarge portion of NYC cheesecake is also impressive.

Taking students to restaurants in Chinatown for an authentic Chinese dining experience is usually on the itinerary for NYC. I take student travel groups to Jack’s Pizzeria and Restaurant for authentic Italian food. Jack’s pizza is right off Broadway in Greenwich Village. It’s probably the best pizza in New York City. One half block away is an Italian Bakery Ferraras. It has been a bakery since the 19th Century. Ferrara’s is a place where students can indulge their longing for sweets.

Believe it or not, sometimes a real authentic experience for students is buying a hot dog or hot pretzel right on the streets of NYC.

For the student tour group wanting something a little different, I have found that visiting Mars 2010, an alien experience restaurant, may be just what they need.
The choices for dining out in New York City seem endless. And, they are.

Entertainment

Karen Goodman says some of the best entertainment for student travel groups combines culture and education. Goodman says, “Many of the student performance tours will be given a tour of Lincoln Center. Often these groups have the opportunity to take a backstage tour. They are thrilled to see the home of the New York Philharmonic. They also like to visit Carnegie Hall and take that backstage tour, where guides may give them a chance to sing at the stage microphone, briefly.”

Student travel groups that want to take in a Broadway play may select long running Broadway musicals, such as The Lion King and Phantom of the Opera. “Students are also fond of the Disney productions, such as Mary Poppins or Wicked. They are thrilled by the musical Momma Mia, too. Momma Mia is a string of Abba songs, and the audience dances. Students like it because it’s lively,” said Goodman.

Goodman says that a simple walk through Central Park can be invigorating and exciting for student travel groups as well. Here they will see the place memorialized in John Lennon’s name, as well as a glimpse of some splendid gardens and other historic markers in New York City.

This short list of recommended destinations is by no means complete. For even more details on dining entertainment and shopping in New York City for student travel groups, visit http://www.educationaltravelconsultants.com/destination/location/new_york_city.htm

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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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