As a music director, taking your group on a performance tour can be a life-changing experience—and we are not being hyperbolic when we say that. Bringing your ensemble on an international performance tour has been proven to assist in enhancing recruitment and fundraising activities as well as improving the ensemble’s reputation in the community. And, perhaps most significantly, they make it possible for people from other cultures to interact and communicate through music. Travel exposes your musicians to performance options they may have never believed possible, whether it’s playing at renowned concert hall, historic cathedral, or any other unique international venue. They also have the opportunity to learn about their craft from world-class musicians as part of a clinic or masterclass. This offers participants a glimpse into the life of a professional performer while providing inspiration and motivation. For student groups in particular, encountering other cultures and values helps broaden their perspectives on the world. They experience independence for the first time, growing more self-assured and capable as the tour progresses. Performance tours provide students the chance to interact with their peers, enjoy entirely new experiences, and develop lifelong relationships. Perhaps nothing demonstrates these benefits better than joint concerts with local groups. When customizing their program, many of our group leaders opt to include at least one joint concert in their final itinerary. We know that it’s a dream for many musicians to play in a historic venues like the Mozarteum, Smetana Hall, Saint-Germain-des-Prés or St. Peter’s Basilica, but time after time our passengers return stateside speaking with tremendous excitement and affection about their exchange concert. The international ensembles we work with take pride in their hospitality, frequently hosting amazing welcome parties and generously sharing their culture — whether that’s local customs, food, or music. Rather than taking in their destination city as an outside observer, participants have the ability to directly interact with their peers and learn from them in a hands-on manner. In fact, some of our past participants have actually formed meaningful, lifelong relationships with their local hosts. Our group leaders always find it valuable to learn about various musical tips and methods from international conductors who approach things with from different viewpoint. Recently, one of our group leaders traveled to France where they presented a joint concert with the Les Philharmonistes; a 48-piece wind ensemble based in the south of France. As their group leader shared upon return to the United States, “many of our tour members said that this trip was a defining experience of their lives.” Regardless of whether you’re traveling with students or adults, taking part in a joint concert with a local band is an incredible way to experience the local culture in a uniquely authentic manner. It’s an opportunity to learn new music and methods. It’s an opportunity to share your favorite songs with a new audience. And most importantly, it’s an opportunity to prove that music is an international language that brings people together. To start planning your own performance tour (complete with a joint concert), speak with one of our Tour Consultants and get a free quote on a fully customized itinerary.