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Sunday, May 1, 2016

"You're Instrumental" gives HS band insight

Friday, January 18, 2013

The Spencer High band traveled to Disney World during the last part of Christmas break, to take part in the "You're Instrumental" music clinic. In addition to performing in a "Dreams Come True" parade through Magic Kingdom, the students rehearsed and performed a number from "Aladdin," which was then incorporated into a portion of the movie's soundtrack for them to listen to.
(Photo submitted)
Members of the Spencer high school band kicked off the new year with a trip to the "You're Instrumental" music clinic in Orlando, Fla., at Disney World.

The trip, the school's second, was meant to give students a peek into life in professional music, specifically as it relates to film.

"You get to work with the actual Disney musicians and techs that put together the soundtracks for the movies," Band Director Kurt Schwarck said. "It's a really cool thing."

In addition to performing in a "Dreams Come True" parade through Magic Kingdom, the students experienced firsthand the process of creating the soundtrack for an animated film.

"One of the guys down there talked about what it's like to be a Disney musician," Schwarck said. "It's completely different than how they normally rehearse."

He continued, "They'll have one or two rehearsals and then turn around and give 40 performances. Our kids are used to doing 40 rehearsals and one performance."

The students rehearsed and performed a number from "Aladdin," and then watched as the techs matched it to the movie.

"Music is changing," he said. "There are more opportunities for kids to go out and do things like this as their job."

While Schwarck has only taken students to Disney once before, he went to several bowl games in the years before, including the Champ Sports Bowl in Orlando and the Cotton Bowl. The students travel every four years, so that each student gets an opportunity. Several years after the last bowl game, he took students to a music festival in Colorado.

"When we did the bowl games, you spend a lot of time rehearsing for a halftime show, and then you spend 15 minutes on the field where no one sees you," he said.

Schwarck noted that the Disney trip is "a lot safer," in part because "it's easier to take kids to because it's a more controlled environment."

The band's trip to the "You're Instrumental" clinic began early last year with an application and a video. Once the application process is completed, the band is invited to attend.

"Disney is sticky with things like this," Schwarck said. "They don't just let anyone in."

The trip cost about $1,100 per student, though some of the money was raised through fundraisers throughout the summer and school year.

During the trip, the students also kept a live blog, allowing parents and friends to keep up with the trip's activities in almost real time.

"It was a cool thing we were able to do," Schwarck said. "Parents could see where we were and what we were doing as we were doing it."

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How about some thanks to the flag team's captain and co-captain that had to develop the flag routine and have led the team for the entire schoolyear due to the illness of the flag director. They have been largely ignored and left on their own by the band director...

-- Posted by gottasay on Fri, Jan 18, 2013, at 8:52 AM

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