Meet Music Travel Consultants Tour Director Keiron MilesChris Forsythe
He is someone who breathes music, is a creative thinker, and has the drive to go beyond the call of duty. Successful and talented in many areas, he is ready when problems arise on a trip. This Tour Director is detailed, caring, and really knows how to gauge your group, keep people smiling and keep your trip going. Music Travel Consultants is humbled and honored to have such a dedicated Tour Director as part of its team. Meet Music Travel Consultants Tour Director Keiron Miles.
Keiron grew up in Maryland as a child and in Georgia as a teenager. From elementary school band in Wheaton, MD to high school band in Marietta, GA, he has always been a dedicated band kid. After competing in his first Bands of America Championship in the ninth grade, he discovered his lifelong passion for the marching arts. Keiron earned his Bachelor’s degree in Music Education from Valdosta State University (GA). As an undergrad, he performed in the marching band, sat principal in the wind symphony, and sang with the Valdosta Symphony Chorus. In his junior year, he won the prestigious Valdosta Symphony Orchestra Concerto Competition, performing “Poem for Flute” by Charles Griffes!
Keiron is both a visual and woodwind consultant in Nashville, TN. He has worked with bands from Tennessee, Georgia, and Nevada. Since 2013, he has been on staff with the Station Camp High School Band (TN), leading the visual program and teaching woodwinds. He is a graduate of the Marching Roundtable Judges Academy where he studied under longtime DCI/BOA/WGI judge Dr. Joe Allison. He has worked Music for All’s Bands of America events, volunteering at Grand National Championships, the National Concert Band Festival, and the Summer Symposium. Outside of music education, Keiron is a full-time student pastor in Nashville, holding two master’s degrees from Dallas Baptist University.
Music Travel Consultants ran our popular MTC Tour Director questions by Keiron. Enjoy!
How long have you been a Tour Director for Music Travel Consultants?
Keiron: My first trip was in 2016.
Do you have any background in music or music education?
Keiron: Began flute in 5th grade; 4 years of High School Band – Section Leader and Band President; 4 years of College Band; won Concerto Competition in college; Performed in the Choir in college; on staff, the Station Camp High School Band, leading Visual and Woodwinds since 2013.
How did you get started tour directing?
Keiron: I’ve always been fascinated with the crazy trips and performance opportunities musical groups take. I remember hearing about Music Travel through its advertisements at BOA events. I went to the website and learned they employ Tour Directors. When volunteering at a BOA event, I was introduced to Chris Forsythe through a mutual friend, and Chris got me started.
What is the hardest part of being a successful MTC Tour Director?
Keiron: The hardest part is waiting for the unexpected. Just like the fire department is waiting for an emergency, our role becomes extra important when unexpected problems arise. Solving problems is fun, but the anticipation of the bus breakdown, the restaurant delay, etc., is the hard part.
What is the largest group tour you have directed?
Keiron: Leander High School Band and Marcus High School Band to BOA Grand Nationals each had 400 travelers.
“Keiron’s attention to detail and personable nature make him a great asset to our tour directing team, no matter how big or small the size of the group!”
Is there something you wish travelers knew before the trip departs?
Keiron: It is a vacation but group-style. On a family vacation, there may be only 4-6 folks. With group travel, lines and large crowds are part of the experience. The itinerary is built with this in mind and most often, groups end up getting personalized treatment anyway. Tour directors are specifically skilled in getting large groups through each element in an efficient and tactful way.
What’s your proudest moment or a time when you were there made a difference/impact?
Keiron: On a New York trip, the group had a special dinner that included visits with the cast of the Broadway show they were seeing. The restaurant made an error and only had enough reserved seating for the students. The adults, who were all teachers/ administrators, had to sit quite far from the students’ section. Well, to the surprise of the adults, I was able to arrange for a couple of cast members to visit them at their table, and I bought them all dessert!
What is your favorite place to travel/visit with and without groups?
Keiron: With Groups: New York City! Everything is exciting and there really is never a dull moment.
Without Groups: Hong Kong – I got to go a couple of times in college. It’s western enough to feel comfortable but foreign enough to allow visitors to love its culture. It’s big, tall, busy and full of thrills.
What does it take to be a successful MTC Tour Director?
Keiron: Patience: Lots of people, lots of decision making, lots of demand, lots of selflessness, and little sleep.
Passion: Passion for leading, passion for large groups, passion for travel, passion for music.
What are the benefits of having an MTC Tour Director at your side?
Keiron: One of the greatest advantages is it allows the TD to handle travel logistics and issues so that the director can focus on the performance and chaperones can focus on the students. Furthermore, the TD thinks through layers that the common traveler may not consider. We know typical patterns, realistic travel times, past failures/successes and hacks for efficiency.
Any advice to share with groups considering performance travel?
Keiron: Do it! It adds a nice change of scenery and performance venue for both director and students. The memories will stick with students for the rest of their lives. For many, it may seem like an unrealistic undertaking to take a trip or to perform at a certain destination. Contact Music Travel Consultants. MTC really can help make your dream become a reality.
Do you think you have what it takes to wear the cape and be an MTC Tour Director like Keiron?
Contact Music Travel Consultants to start planning your trip.