Canadian Brass invited to Venezuela as part of worldwide music eduaction initiative & celebration!
October 2010 – Last fall Maestro José Antonio Abreu, one of the most honored music educators in the world, came to Toronto to receive the Glenn Gould Award, awarded every third year to a living individual in recognition of his/her contributions to music and communication. As part of the celebration he brought the sensational Simon Bolivar Youth Orchestra to perform. He also invited Canadian Brass to join the Venezuela Brass Ensemble on stage for a particularly exciting and emotional performance. Now in return Maestro Abreu, and the El Sistema music education organization he founded, has personally invited Canadian Brass to join him in Venezuela November 11 – 18. Chuck Daellenbach, tuba player of the Brass and holder of a PhD in music education, was quick to sum up the opportunity to work alongside El Sistema, “It’s the most exciting thing happening in music education since the Suzuki Method hit in the 60′s!”
Canadian Brass has well been regarded for its continuing commitment to music education over the years. It has conducted master classes and given educational performances throughout the concert world – from North America to the Far East, Europe and points in between. For its work over several decades the Canadian Brass has been recognized for its dedication to music students with three Honorary Doctorates as well as awards and commendation from Interlochen Arts Academy, Midori and Friends, BMI, Music Academy of the West, Yamaha, MENC, CMEC and now El Sistema.
El Sistema is the publicly financed music education initiative that started in Venezuela and has created a worldwide sensation in music education. Its official name is Fundación del Estado para el Sistema Nacional de las Orquestas Juveniles e Infantiles de Venezuela, and usually translates to English as National Network of Youth and Children’s Orchestras of Venezuela. Currently El Sistema oversees 125 youth orchestras in Venezuela with over 300,000 children who participate, with around 90% coming from areas that are usually deprived of education resources and who live in poorer neighborhoods. El Sistema sees the orchestra as a means of social organization and through action, creates opportunities and community. The Simon Bolivar Youth Orchestra, the top orchestra in El Sistema, has not only gained an international reputation and critical acclaim for their exciting and enthusiastic performances, but were recently signed to a recording contract by the Deutsche Grammophon label and became the launching pad for the young and vibrant conductor Gustavo Dudamel, who is now music director of the Los Angeles Philharmonic. El Sistema has inspired other music education initiatives around the world including those in Argentina, Australia, Bolivia, Brazil, Canada, Colombia, Costa Rica, Cuba, Ecuador, El Salvador, England, Guatemala, Honduras, India, Jamaica, Korea, Mexico, Nicaragua, Panama, Paraguay, Peru, Puerto Rico, Dominican Republic, Scotland, Trinidad and Tobago, USA and Uruguay.
“If anybody asked me where is there something really important going on for the future of classical music? I would simply have to say here, in Venezuela… I say I have seen the future of music in Venezuela and that is a resurrection” – Simon Rattle
“The truth is I have never felt so moved. Not only because of the emotion of the moment… but I must say because of the quality of the El Sistema musicians” – Plácido Domingo
Dr. Abreu and El Sistema now recognize the Canadian Brass and its life-time achievement and commitment to music education as well as championing the cause of music as a life nurturing art form. El Sistema, which is receiving unprecedented international attention for its innovation and dedication to music as a transformative element in society, is inviting the Brass to share its insight into music education in the broadest possible settings.