Members of the FSPA performance ensembles have many exciting opportunities for domestic and international travel. These experiences provide priceless memories and forge friendships that cross oceans. Here are some of the recent opportunities FSPA students have experienced.
Flint Youth Philharmonia
This group travels every other year to cities in the Midwest United States and Ontario, Canada. Most recently, they toured Chicago in Spring 2017.
Flint Youth Wind Ensemble
This group is beginning to tour, focusing on cities in the midwestern United States and Ontario, Canada. Most recently, they toured in Toronto in Spring 2015.Their next US tour is scheduled for 2017.
Flint Youth Symphony Orchestra
This group goes on an international tour every other year to countries where they have sister relationships with other youth orchestras. On non-travel years, the FYSO plays host to their international friends, welcoming them to Flint. Most recently, FYSO traveled to France in April 2016 and hosted sister orchestras from Paris and Lyon, France in 2017.
Flint Youth Ballet
Every four years, this group travels to Austria in the summer to participate in Young Tanzsommer! The group toured in 2003, 2007, 2011 and 2015.
The Flint School of Performing Arts has the opportunity to host choral, jazz, chamber and orchestral musicians through its relationships with schools of the arts and youth orchestras in other countries. In non-travel years for the FYSO, we welcome these artists to visit Flint and share their musical gifts with us and the community.
What does it mean to be a host?
Hosts provide a place for their foreign guests (preferably at least 2 guests) to stay overnight during their stay in the U.S. (usually 5-8 days).
Hosts provide many of the meals for their guests, including packed lunches. Sometimes guests have dietary issues, such as Celiac Disease.
Hosts provide transportation for their guests. This is one of their primary hosting duties. The foreign guests will have unique and rigorous rehearsal and performance schedules. Sometimes they will need to be dropped off and picked up at FIM. Sometimes they will need rides to and from other schools in Genesee County. Their pick up and drop off times could be in the early morning, in the late afternoon, or late in the evening. We will make great effort to arrange the schedules to be as convenient as possible for the host families. Depending on their travel arrangements, guests may also need rides to and from the airport. [In the past, in order to deal with the transportation demands of hosting, some families have worked together to do carpooling. This is acceptable.
Hosts provide family support for the guests. The guests are usually young – middle and high school age – and often this is their first time oversees. Some speak little English. Their time here is highly scheduled and can get physically and emotionally exhausting. Host families support their guests through this exciting but stressful time.
Host families provide cultural experiences for their guests. Just staying in the host family home is a great way for the guests to experience a new culture. However, host families are encouraged to introduce their guests to local and American foods and activities such as site-seeing and shopping. The primary purpose of the guest’s stay is to rehearse and perform. Consequently there aren’t large blocks of “free time” to do extensive travelling. However, time – some evenings or a morning and at least one full day – will be set aside for fun and cultural experiences.
If you have any questions, please contact the FSPA office at (810) 238-1350 x141.