Dec 6, 2012

UPDATED! 10 Tips to Enhance Your Next Concert

Do your performances fall into the category of the "typical school music concert"?  But, I'm not talking about the music your group is performing.  A concert is not only an opportunity to showcase your students, but it is venue to communicate to your audience.  These ten tips can add variety and effectiveness to your next concert.
  • Give a short presentation on SmartMusic or iTouch/Smartphone/iPad music apps. that kids and parents would be interested in.  Kids love technology because it is hands-on and they can easily identify with it.
  • Showcase chamber ensembles like a brass quintet, perc ensemble or even a rockstar student soloist.  This works well especially around solo & ensemble time.  They can perform before or during the concert.
  • Include extra information in the concert program.  For example:  future performance dates, permission slips for upcoming trips, program notes to the concert pieces, a private teacher list, music booster info, and SmartMusic ordering info.  You can even add QR codes that will take audience members to a specific website.  See Adding QR Codes to Concert Programs
  • Involve your students by letting them introduce the pieces and read the composer or program notes.  Or, perhaps your students worked on a project that went along with one of the concert pieces.  Have your students show-off their work.
  • Create (or have your students create) a PowerPoint or slideshow presentation with announcements, reminders, pictures of your students playing their instruments, and program notes.  Have this playing before the concert starts for your audience.
  • Include music advocacy information.  Concerts are great opportunities to educate your audience about the positive benefits of music education.  You can even specifically mention it during the concert and point to notable facts or statistics.
  • Stream your concert LIVE on Ustream.  Family and friends of your students that cannot come to the concert will be able to watch it online.  Basic streaming is free and can be done with just a webcam and a laptop.
  • Have a joint concert with another ensemble.  Invite the local high school band or perhaps even a community band.  Host an exchange concert with another middle school group.  Your students will love hearing and performing with them.
  • Give a demonstration concert and show-off the instruments for your future band students in elementary school with kid-friendly music!  Give an instrument feature to each section of the band.
  • Have an off-campus concert at an outdoor park, local high school or other performance venue.  Consider having your jazz group or chamber strings perform at a restaurant.  Make it a special night for the students and parents!
What other things have you done to enhance your concerts?

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