Ludlowe Makes Disney a Musical Kingdom


Photo Credit: Charithma Peiris

Grace Kenney, Spotlight Editor

On March 16, 2023, more than 100 students from Ludlowe’s outstanding music program arrived at Walt Disney World in Orlando, Florida ready to wow the crowds. At Ludlowe, we are fortunate to have an excellent music program, where students are encouraged to learn and to invest themselves into each piece and performance. Ludlowe students dazzled the crowds at Disney World, which boasts 58 million annual guests making it the most visited resort in the world. 

The trip to Disney was an impressive logistical feat organized by the music department teachers: Mrs. Pine, Mrs. Bryan, Mr. Albano, and Mr. Eckhardt. A truck filled with gear, instruments, and uniforms made the trek from Fairfield Ludlowe to sunny Florida, driven by parent volunteers. Students packed into coach buses to the airport, where they began their trip to Orlando. This optional trip was open to all four grades across the three strands of music at Fairfield Ludlowe: Band, Orchestra, and Chorus. 

The trip was an unparalleled opportunity to learn. In addition to rehearsals, each strand participated in a workshop at Disney Imagination Campus, where students learned and performed iconic Disney songs. After just an hour to sight-read and learn the music, the Ludlowe musicians and singers were recorded and dubbed into a Disney movie. Katie Freimuth is a junior in the choir, which recorded a scene from the Hunchback of Notre Dame. She describes her experience as a great way “to connect with people across all strands and create new bonds. It was amazing to see all the choir members on the trip in the workshop and get the chance to see what it is like to do a professional vocal recording. Hearing our voices in a Disney classic was magical and immensely nostalgic.” Ludlowe students were able to ask their Disney conductor about the professional music world. Students gained insight into how Disney chooses performers, and were given advice on handling auditions and nerves. 

In addition, each of the 3 strands gave performances at the Waterside Stage at Disney Springs. Each strand received applause from an appreciative audience of Disney music aficionados. 

As Mary Poppins said, “In every job that must be done, there is an element of fun.” Students used free time to explore each Disney park. They enjoyed attractions and rides at Magic Kingdom, Hollywood Studios, Epcot, and Animal Kingdom. The time spent waiting in line for rides and screaming on roller coasters furthered the bond within the students in the music program, strengthening the feeling of community at Ludlowe.