Monday, April 12, 2010

Exeter-Milligan School Update: Band Trip

2010 Dallas Band Trip
Shane Whitford,
Exeter-Milligan High School Music Instructor

It is amazing how much you can get done in a few short hours. By the time you subtract travel and sleep time we were in Dallas for approximately 30 hours. Surprisingly we covered a lot of ground in that short time and I am proud to say that the Exeter-Milligan students were excellent travelers.

Our itinerary was jam packed with activities including: Oklahoma City Bombing Memorial, JFK Memorial, Sonny Bryans BBQ, Dallas World Aquarium, Dallas Cowboys Stadium Tour, Medieval Times, Six Flags Amusement Park, and the Dallas Symphony Orchestra. Our itinerary also included a clinic with Frank Troyka at Berkner HS in Richardson TX. Mr. Troyka has an outstanding music program and he gave us a lot of help on our contest music. I think both the students and I agree that we could have spent more time with him because it was a lot of fun and our sound improved. We had a lot of fun on the trip but I felt there were two highlights that should be mentioned.

First, I just have to say that money can’t buy everything, but 1.4 billion dollars buys a pretty awesome stadium. I was fully prepared for the Dallas Cowboys Stadium Tour to be a little boring since it’s, “just another stadium,” however, I was wrong. This facility holds several world records and aside from its sheer size the quality of the facility was impressive. If you every get a chance to go to an event in the stadium or take a tour I would highly recommend it!

Second, The Meyerson Symphony Center and the Dallas Symphony Orchestra make a great combination. Not only is the Meyerson a beautiful facility designed by one of the worlds top architects, I.M. Pei, but it is also one of the worlds most acoustically sound buildings and houses a world class orchestra. Aside from the impressive building, orchestra, and performance of Carl Orff’s “Carmina Burana” I was very pleased with the behavior of the students before, during, and after the show. I have never seen students on the edge of their seats at a classical performance and I can only say thank you for being open minded and enjoying yourselves.

As I said before the students were excellent travelers and I would gladly do it again. Thank you parents for all you have done to make this trip a success and thank you students for making this trip a success. On a side note, the 7-12 music program has a website now and pictures from the trip, calendar info, and class information can be found there. The address is or go to the E-M homepage ( and click on my name.

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