TED Prize

The incredible El Sistema music program is coming to the US

Posted by: Emily McManus


Three months ago, the visionary Venezuelan musician Dr. José Antonio Abreu made his TED Prize wish — to create and document a special training program for at least 50 gifted young musicians, passionate for their art and for social justice, and dedicated to developing El Sistema in the US and in other countries.

Today we are proud to introduce the Abreu Fellows Program at New England Conservatory of Music. It is a one-year postgraduate certificate program for accomplished young musicians who desire to become ambassadors of El Sistema and who are committed to developing it outside of Venezuela. Abreu Fellows will spend a year studying between Boston and Caracas, and leave with the tools to return to their communities to teach the El Sistema model.

Subject to funds raised, the program is ready to open this fall with spots for the first 18 fellows.

More detailed information on the program, the fellows and funding scholarships is online at a beautiful new website, elSistemaUSA.org.

el Sistema USA is a support and advocacy network for people and organizations inspired by Venezula’s monumental music education program. It will grow to provide comprehensive information on the El Sistema philosophy and methodology, and host a variety of resources that will aid those building, expanding and supporting El Sistema programs in the US and beyond.

Check out the site and be inspired. Help build the program by identifying or supporting a fellow. And if you haven’t already, watch the unforgettable youth orchestra performance from TED.

A huge thanks to Albertson Design, who did an amazing job branding the fellows program and designing and building the website.

And thanks to The Rackspace Cloud for hosting the site.

Comments (5)

  • Graciela Berumen commented on Dec 9 2013

    As a teacher this sounds wonderful and very inspiring. Great work!

  • Glenn Thomas commented on Jul 30 2012

    If you’d enjoy connecting and networking in the Global El Sistema community, I hope you’ll consider joining this group:
    Many program directors and advocates meet there.
    Glenn Thomas
    Sistema Global

  • Solit Goit commented on May 14 2009

    it’s good to hear that The incredible El Sistema music program is coming to the US.Thanks for informing us.

  • Howard Weaver commented on May 6 2009

    I sometimes fear for our beloved TED.

    Look at descriptions this item: incredible … visionary … transforms … amazing … This is *by no means* the most egregious example, simply the latest.

    TED is becoming so self-referential and hyperbolic that the effect becomes deflation, not inspiration. I’ve been to more than 10 TEDs and have always endorsed it optimistic, idealistic gestalt, but even in the past it’s been hard to justify the precious self-image.

    When “every child is above average,” credibility suffers. As every writer (and certainly a journalist like Chris Anderson) knows, piling on such descriptors in writing about your own program and your own work is like laughing at your own jokes.

    Please, a little restraint.

  • Roman Sekerka commented on May 6 2009

    “elSistemaUSA.org” links to http://www.elsistema.org/

    I hope there will be some RSS feed or twitter account to keep us informed.