Canada’s New Brunswick Youth Orchestra launches El Sistema program

Posted on: November 8, 2010

In Saturday’s (11/6) Telegraph-Journal (New Brunswick, Canada), Kate Wallace writes, “The first Sistema students returned in September with a different bearing than the group of fidgety kids who first held their instruments in December. Quiet and purposeful, they streamed into the basement of Beaverbrook School in Moncton and found their instruments, the kid-sized violins, violas, cellos and basses they studied last year. … Thirty-eight of last year’s inaugural class of 45 Sistema students, who range in age from five to 10, have returned to continue with the free, after-school music program the New Brunswick Youth Orchestra launched last fall. It is based on El Sistema, a renowned classical musical program founded in Venezuela more than 30 years ago by maestro José Antonio Abreu, who started with 11 students in a Caracas parking garage. The program has grown into a force for social change in the poor, often violent South American country, where more than 350,000 children, many from the toughest slums, get free classical music instruction six days a week. … Sistema NB is growing, and quickly, from an initial 45 students to 110 in year two. Woodwinds have been added to the strings instruments of last year, and, Antonio Delgado, himself a product of El Sistema, has moved from Caracas to Moncton to lead the program.”

Posted November 8, 2010