The Kenton High School Instrumental and Vocal Music Department recently traveled to Orlando, Florida with 126 students, 20 chaperones, 3 directors, and Trip Coordinator Judy Donnal for a five day, four night trip to Walt Disney World.
This trip occurs once every four years and is optional for all students who have been in an ensemble for at least two consecutive years.
During the trip, students had a huge amount of educational and fun experiences, ranging from workshops with Disney musicians and performers, performances in the parks, dinner at the famous Medieval Times dinner theatre, a trip to Ron Jon Surf Shop in Cocoa Beach, and recreation time in all of the Disney parks.
The instrumental music program participated in a Disney Performing Arts workshop where they worked with acclaimed educator and arranger, Allen Gray. They worked on effective sight-reading techniques and recorded the pieces they were rehearsing with the help of a professional Disney sound engineer. The culmination of the workshop was recording music from the motion picture, Tarzan, where the sound engineer dubbed their recording with scenes from the movie. They became the movie’s soundtrack and got to watch the final product! In addition, the band suited up in their marching uniforms (Mickey ears included) to march in a parade at Magic Kingdom. They performed “Mickey” by Toni Basil, “Beat It” by Michael Jackson, and Rah Rah.
On the vocal music side, all four choirs combined as one ensemble to rehearse and perform a medley of songs from the movie Tangled with a Disney performer, Kyle Haak. The students also learned how to create sound effects with their voices, and the workshop culminated with their performance being set to animated scenes from the movie. They were dubbed “official Disney Crew members,” and got to watch their performance. Many of the singers noted this was one of the highlights of the trip for them. The combined choir then sang a four song concert in Disney Springs, which included “Cantate Domino,” “Amor Vincit Omnia,” “Walk in Jerusalem Just-a Like John,” and wrapped up with a medley of songs from The Lion King.
The Kenton Instrumental Music Program is under the direction of Mr. Travis Wissman and Assistant Band Director Mr. R. Jordan Gibson. Todd Daquino is the Vocal Music Program Director. Both programs will be performing in Ashland this Friday for OMEA Large Group Contest. In addition, The Chorale will be singing at the annual Palm Sunday service at St. John’s on April 14 (time TBA), the High School Spring Choral Awards Concert will be Sunday, May 5 at 2:00pm in the Middle School Auditorium, and the High School Band Spring Awards Concert will be Thursday, May 9 at 7:00pm in the High School Gymnasium.
If you would like to see video footage of the Florida Trip performances, there is a link available on the Kenton City Schools Music Department Facebook page. This page also includes constant program updates and information. The High School Instrumental and Vocal Music Department would like to thank the community, school district, and Board of Education for their support of this year’s trip.
The educational outcomes are astonishing, and the experience the students gain from being immersed in such an expansive community simply cannot be duplicated. We are proud of how our program represented the Kenton community and school district and look forward to the next trip in 2023.