Attending a Director's Choice Festival: What Music Educators are saying

Posted by Erin M. Grigson on May 28, 2019 10:36:30 AM

The trips have been taken, the performances are complete, the awards have been given and another fantastic festival and travel season is in the books!

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From Showcase of Music to Scholastic Music Festivals to Music Across Texas events to Premier Performance Invitationals, we held 96 festivals and listened to 1,086 ensembles – that’s over 47,000 students! And we couldn’t have done it without our 118 adjudicators, 83 site coordinators and the countless students from our host groups.

So what was it was like to participate in this year's festival line-up? Here’s what a few of our festival participants had to say:

What was the best part of your experience?

The Staff
"Director’s Choice staff were wonderful. We had a student who got sick while we were in the warm-up room. Our student teacher and the DC staff stayed with him during our performance and took good care of him." -N. Cooley, Hedrick Middle School Band


The Travel
"My trip was fully customizable and the team worked hard to make everything happen to my specifications. The students had a lot of fun! They will cherish their performance in Carnegie Hall for the rest of their lives!" -J. Hooper, Director of Orchestra at College Station High School

"Our Dallas trip was one of the most successful trips I have had with a group. We had a great time and everything was enjoyable! Our bus driver was outstanding and took care of everything we could need while making incredible time ok both legs of our trip. No worries for this director-just fun with my students!" -B. Woodward, Driscoll Middle School Choir

Bass Performance Hall

“The fact that most everything was included and arranged for us.  As a director, I actually got to enjoy the trip instead of trying to figure out everything on my own. I also really liked having most meals included, it was nice to know the kids would have plenty to eat even with little to no money.” - M. Cantu-Harkless, Dance Teacher, Heights High School


The Performances Venues 
"The best part of the experience was when the kids stepped onto the Stage in Lila Cockrell and they were awestruck at the performance venue. Everything about the festival was wonderful. We had been traveling from Lubbock to San Antonio since 1 am that morning and were running a little late. Mr Fellows and the rest of the staff was really nice and ready to help us with any issue that we had. He even helped deliver our trophies to Fiesta Texas because we could not attend the Awards Ceremony. Everyone was professional and very kind. It was a wonderful experience for our students and myself alike." -R. Sanchez, Director of Bands at Cavazos Middle School


"The best part was seeing the students having so much fun.  I love the [Music Across Texas] venue because it's a safe and fun place for them." -S.Toller, Music Teacher at Petrolia Elementary School


"I greatly enjoyed everything about both performance sites. They were easy to find, easy to unload equipment, the staff and student helpers were accommodating and wonderful. The comments were helpful and encouraging. My students were incredibly excited with the results and the improvement they made from the last time we did Showcase of Music. It was an awesome experience in every way." -J. Schultz, Director of Bands and Choir at Chico High School

The Feedback
"Our students had a great experience and really enjoyed the adjudicator comments.  They were THRILLED when she gave individual medals for those showing expression and watching the conductor.  Of course the food and entertainment was great as well. I had many parents express their satisfaction for such a fun, organized, and productive festival." -J. Duncan, Choir Director at Baker Elementary School


"I felt my groups worked very hard this year to improve from their UIL experiences, and it was great to come to this contest and have them come out of it feeling rewarded for their efforts. I am thankful that DC understands the need for encouragement beyond the UIL judging. It is definitely motivating to come to contest with DC and know that they will get a boost from the experience. Thanks for getting that and providing the lift for our programs!" -R. Brownfield, Director of Orchestral Music at Victory Lakes Intermediate School

While we may have wrapped up our 2019 season, we are already looking and planning ahead for 2020. Are you?  Check out our Showcase of Music dates, times and venues for band, choir and orchestra! 

Learn more about our Showcase of Music Festivals!

Topics: Student Group Travel, Music Across Texas, Overnight Travel, Student Travel