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Travel/Festivals

  • Five Reasons Why You Should Take Your Ensemble on an International Tour

    Tom Merrill | June 8, 2018

    We all know the benefits of learning and performing music. Playing an instrument in an ensemble can improve a person’s sense of belonging and feeling of community, improve cognitive and motor skills, and help people form lifelong friendships.

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  • The Importance of Our Ancestry

    Tom Merrill | April 6, 2018

    A story was relayed to me by a band director friend. She was at the Midwest Clinic in Chicago, and while walking through McCormick Place overheard a portion of a conversation between a group of young band directors.

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  • Travel Planning: Budget Myth Busting—Part 3

    Tom Merrill | March 2, 2018

    In this final (for now, anyway) installment of this series, we’ll discuss some myths related to motorcoach travel and expectations at hotels when traveling with your ensemble.

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  • Travel Planning Budget Myth Busting—Part 2

    Tom Merrill | February 2, 2018

    In the last issue we started to tackle some budget-related student travel myths, to help you as a director better address many of the typical questions parent boosters will pose during the travel planning process.

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  • Travel Planning Budget Myth Busting—Part 1

    Tom Merrill | January 8, 2018

    About a year ago in this column, we ran an article about the advantages of early planning in relation to performance travel.

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  • Experiences That Made a Difference

    Tom Merrill | December 6, 2017

    This issue of SBO Magazine is the 20th annual salute to “50 Directors Who Make a Difference.”

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  • Keeping it Real: Having Growth Experiences on the Road

    Tom Merrill | November 6, 2017

    There’s no growth in a comfort zone, and no comfort in a growth zone.

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  • Setting Goals for Your Performance Tour

    Tom Merrill | October 4, 2017

    Once you’ve decided that performance travel will be a part of what your program offers, it’s wise to set some goals to achieve that are related to the tour itself.

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  • Mapping Your Way: Finding the Best Travel Planner

    Tom Merrill | September 8, 2017

    At some point in your music education career, and by some point I mean “every couple of weeks”, you will likely be posed the following question from a student, a parent booster, an administrator, or all of the above: “When’s our next trip?” 

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  • Location, Location, Location: Choosing Site-Appropriate Repertoire

    Tom Merrill | August 11, 2017

    Several years ago, while still working as a travel planner, I was the on-site tour director for one of my client groups.

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  • Tending the Landscape Over the Summer

    Tom Merrill | July 14, 2017

    We have a patio behind our house made of paver bricks surrounded by landscaping.

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  • Festivals and Travel Resources for 2018!

    Tom Merrill | June 19, 2017

    The 2017 school year is over, summer band programs are beginning, and planning for 2018 is well underway.

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