You may be familiar with Beyond the Clef, a podcast by music educators for music educators. We have expanded Beyond the Clef by creating a Travel Series since we all know travel can be a great way to recruit and retain students by offering them experiences they cannot get inside the classroom. I am excited to share with you a sneak peek at one of our first Travel Series Episodes featuring Dan Stuby, Sales Manager at Disney Youth Programs.
I sat down at TMEA this past February with Dan. Dan and Disney have been long time partners of Director’s Choice because they offer so many unique and inspiring opportunities for our performing groups. However, don't just take my word for it. Take a look at this excerpt from our conversation. For the full interview, watch or listen to the podcast here.Marcie: This is awesome! Dan, we've known you for a while, and we work with Disney Parks a lot, and we think that you have stellar programs going on for our kids. Tell us a little bit about Disney Youth Programs and what that is.
Dan: Disney Parks are known and beloved worldwide as family-friendly destinations, places where the entire family can come and have fun together. One of the things that's grown out of that passion for families has been a passion for youth groups that want to go and visit and experience the parks, whether they're coming to perform and to share their musical expertise or their performance expertise, to learn from our professionals and workshops and educational experiences to learn in field study programs throughout our parks or to come for a fun visit or maybe a senior class celebration. Disney Youth Programs has really been built to serve those needs and to provide those inspiring and educational experiences for youth groups across the country and really around the world.
Marcie: What are the options for bands and other performing groups?
Dan: Well, we have marches, and I think that's one of the things that we're known for, and it's a fantastic experience. Disney is one of the few places in the world where you can march down Main Street USA and not only experience a Disney Park as a guest but become a part of the experience for our guests. Our students give great feedback about that.
Marcie: In addition to marches, what are the other opportunities for performing groups at Disney?
Dan: We also have stage performances if you're looking to bring a concert ensemble or orchestras, dance groups, choirs as well. Moreover, then we also have the educational workshops, which take the students behind the scenes into our professional studio facilities, where they get to work with our professionals and learn from the Disney ways.
Marcie: So these kids have such a unique opportunity to perform at Disney and be mentored by some of the people that you bring in to work with them. That's got to be such a life-changing experience for these kids.
Dan: We're fortunate to have some fantastic clinicians and educators with professional credits and Disney experience. They are passionate about inspiring the next generation of musicians and leaders in the world. So it's a fulfilling responsibility for us.
Marcie: That’s why we feel such a kinship with Disney.
Dan: We appreciate your partnership in helping us to serve the groups and make it a seamless experience. Once a director calls Director's Choice, of course, your team can point them to our Disney Performing Arts application and assist them in completing the application. We accept applications one year before the group's arrival, and I'll tell you, the programs have become popular over the years, especially during those spring break times, and many groups are wanting to come. We encourage groups to apply as close to one year prior as possible.
As our visit continues, Dan shares a little bit about each of the Disney Parks including what's new, what's going on, and what's exciting for the students to do at each of the parks. For the full podcast, click here.
If you are interested in bringing your group to Disney and participating in one of the Disney Youth Programs we talked about, give us a call, or send us a request. Director's Choice is a Disney Preferred Youth Travel Partner.
For more information on doing Disney right, check out more magical insider tips here.