Posted: 17 November 2014
Recently retired Director of Music John Hunter looks back at his touring experiences and how much it meant to him and his students.
“Parents, governors and colleagues all recognise the ‘special’ bonds that develop within a touring choir and how this has had a really positive effect on the children’s development both socially and academically.
“It really brings out the value of teamwork for students. It builds their self-confidence, but also their confidence in their team.
“Some of the older students are in loco parentis when we’re away, caring for the younger ones. I think all the students grow and develop over the week.
“The two tours I did with you were the glue needed to cement together a choir which, even now, still has ex-members, who are now at university or beyond, as well as current singers promising to be at my final xmas concert.
“Part of this must be assigned to your company, and all who have contact with the children during a tour; from the coach drivers and the tour guides, to the professional and very patient and understanding managers (especially when it come to payments and paperwork!).
“I read a lot of reviews of different companies before choosing Club Europe, and I was a little sceptical at first; but you provided an excellent service which, as I have just said, has had such an enormous effect on a choir I shall miss desperately.
“From the very first note of the first concert [in the Kurpark Pavilion Bad Muenster], the enthusiasm just grew and spiralled. We were stunned and very proud at how well the choir performed. It was like I had 40 professional singers with me.
“In between the concerts we went on a boat trip, visited caves where we performed an impromptu song and went to Rheinfels Castle and Phantasialand.
“I shall never forget the last concert outside the Youth Hostel in Bacharach with the kids looking out at the audience as the sun was going down in the valley: magical.
A Show Choir is a great forum for all abilities of singing. We did several numbers where students performed solos and they all sang with great confidence.
“One of my students told me: ‘We were pretty scared and didn’t know how we’d be received but it was brilliant, especially when the audience got up and sung and danced with us!’
“Their expressions as they came off stage were a portrait. I’ll never forget it.”
Anthony Chew, Head of Music, Darwen Aldridge Community Academy, Lancashire.
Jane Werry, Head of Music, Hayes School, Kent.
James Williams, Llandovery College, Carmarthenshire.