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Article posted on: August 22, 2022


Ensemble name
: Hot House Music

Group leader: Jonathan Eno

Destination: New York

Ensemble type: Jazz Band

What was your main aim/objective for this tour?

This was our first tour after the lockdown and it was vital that we had a tour full of incredible performances and as all-inclusive as possible. 

Why did you choose this destination? 

We know NYC to be a great destination for live jazz and with the number of tourist activities available, it was the ideal destination. The metro cards made a massive difference in getting around the island.

Can you briefly describe the venues you performed in during this trip?

Intrepid was sensational - a great audience and fabulous support from the team hosting us. The best bits though were around the museum – all the kids got fully involved in the interactive aspects of the museum. I particularly enjoyed the dramatic skyline behind the band whilst they performed. 

Lincoln Center – the Jazz Workshop with Mariel Bildestrom was the best workshop we have ever had. The venue is sensational, and the level of educational input was fabulous. All my kids loved this! 

Swing 46 – a great Jazz club where our live performance was piped onto the boardwalk to draw in punters. A great stage, a great vibe and really accommodating staff. 

Flash mobs in Madison Square Park – with audiences in excess of 500 people, the energy for these late-night flash mobs was incredible. Fireflies were literally flying in between the saxophone section. 

Why did you choose these venues?

We need high-level performance venues, and these were the best available. 

What will be your lasting memories of this tour?

It was a timely reminder of why touring is so important. It is the holistic development of the students and this is something we missed greatly during Covid. The best memories were Top of the Rock, Derek the tour guide, the Lincoln Center workshop and the last gig at Swing 46.

What did your students get out of this tour?

This tour was a “finally” moment - they got to expound their pent-up frustration with Covid whilst making some great memories. Instagram and Snapchat nearly had a meltdown. They were able to be “young” again. 

Why did you choose Halsbury for this tour?

Quality service and support. The team looking after me were great. 

Were there any guarantees that Halsbury was offering that made it easier for you to get senior leadership and/or parents on board?

Yes, the Covid Guarantee and the travel insurance were very good. 

How did it feel to be on tour again?

Amazing but exhausting. I love how the team at Halsbury were available at all times - I knew if I needed them, they would be there. Great service. 

How would you describe the experience of working with Halsbury on this tour?

It’s the level of support that we received that made the difference. I always felt they were on my side, the side of making a great tour happen. 

Would you recommend Halsbury to your friends and colleagues?

Yes, because of the service and value for money. Literally, the best value tour in 20 years, thank you.

Do you have any tips for other teachers/group leaders planning their first tours since Covid?

Yes, over prepare, over plan and reach out to people where you are heading. Say “yes” to every opportunity. 

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