The Ensemble seeks to connect and inform all people who are committed to ensemble music education for youth empowerment and social change.
News & Resources
Read an inspiring interview with Joseph Jones. He’s a multi-instrumental musician, composer, conductor, and the founder of the Orchestra Amadeus, whose mission is to promote social justice through classical music.
Here is an interview with Linda Cliatt-Wayman, who led one of the most dangerous high schools in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania (United States).
In the June 2018 issue of The World Ensemble, we enthusiastically reported that Sistema Toronto had been granted $500,000 by the Ontario provincial government as part of a significant new investment in arts education.
The first building ever designed entirely for a Sistema-inspired program in the United States, the YOLA Center at Inglewood, is now under construction in Los Angeles. The YOLA Center will be the fourth program site for the Youth Orchestra of Los Angeles, and will also provide space for citywide YOLA rehearsals and events.
Nick Malinowski, Executive Director, Kidznotes, Durham, NC
Every year, one of the highlights of the winter concert at Sistema Ravinia in Chicago is the moment when the young musicians whack their guests on the head. Let me be more specific: the real highlight is when one young musician almost whacks a guest on the head with a boomwhacker the size of a pool noodle.
When does the percussion player in a symphony orchestra ever stand right by the principal clarinetist’s shoulder?
The answer: when the Sistema Europe Youth Orchestra (SEYO) is rehearsing Danzon Number 2, by Arturo Marquez – which begins in a sensuous hush, with a solo clarinet melody over woodblock beats. “It’s just a few of you starting this beautiful piece, “ said Maestro Sascha Goetzel, who was leading the rehearsal. “So let’s put you physically together, so that you can play fully together.”
ITAC4, the Fourth International Teaching Artist Conference, will take place in New York City on 13-15 September (first time in the United States), and is completely sold out.
Christie Gray, Executive Director, Sistema Toronto
Sistema Toronto is in its second year of a three-year project dedicated to building a detailed and integrated curriculum focused on musical and social learning outcomes for its 250 students, aged 6-12. The music curricula components include music and moment, strings, choir, and percussion. We are also creating an integrated social curriculum, developed by a team of our teachers and rooted in experiential learning pedagogy, that is intended to be woven into teaching and learning outcomes for all music classes.
Ana de Souza, Teaching Artist, Miami Music Project (and MMP alumna)
I had the privilege last month of attending the L.A. Phil’s 2018 Take a Stand Festival, Symposium, and Teaching Intensive. The Festival brought together students aged 12-18 from programs directly inspired by El Sistema or similarly dedicated to social change and youth development through instrumental music education. About 140 students, from 36 programs in 19 states plus Puerto Rico, participated in this ten-day festival, which began at Soka University in Orange County and finished in Los Angeles with performances in Walt Disney Concert Hall. The students were grouped into two ensembles: the Symphony Orchestra, conducted by Maestros Gustavo Dudamel and Michael Morgan, and the Junior String Ensemble, conducted by Maestros Jeffrey Grogan and Soo Han.
Thirteen U.S. El Sistema-inspired programs have been accepted (after a competitive application
process) into El Sistema USA’s PRESTO grant program, which provides group learning, mentorship, and funding to programs in their first five years.