There is no better feeling than looking over the list of participating groups at this year’s Panama City Beach Music Festival, and seeing so many new directors. to our festival, and so many directors who have participated through our 40 years.
Many of our loyal directors have retired since we began the festival as the Festival of Champions of Champions in 1980. Even my former partner, Steve Simpson left our company to move on to an incredible career at the University of Alabama. Steve is doing the kind of work on a much larger stage now, and we remain very proud of him, and the many other directors who moved on to larger programs and schools.
Yes, the names and faces on our stage have changed, but the passion and enthusiasm to teach music to kids is just as prevalent as ever. Observing this gives you a wonderful feeling all the way down to your toes, because it reaffirms that feeling is not about business, it’s about kids, and they’re in very good hands.