Venezuelan music scheme exported to Europe

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Children from poor neighbourhoods in Europe could learn to play classical instruments under a scheme based on one in Venezuela.
The country has a strong youth orchestra network, created from the thousands who have benefitted from the free instruments and tuition provided by El Systema.
The scheme has been running for 35 years, and studies suggest children involved in it do better in school, and stay in education longer.
Will Grant reports from Caracas.

Sir Simon Rattle, director of the Berlin Philharmonic, swore that the country’s youth orchestras were doing the most important work in classical music anywhere in the world.

And former Berlin Philharmonic director Claudio Abbado only needed to see one performance by the orchestra to invite the Venezuelans to play in Germany.

The talented musicians of the National System of Venezuelan Youth and Children’s Orchestras are a source of national pride, like football stars in other Latin American countries.

They have also inspired 23 countries across the hemisphere to launch similar music education programmes.



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