NotesFAQContact Us
Search Tips
Peer reviewed Peer reviewed
Direct linkDirect link
ERIC Number: EJ1090784
Record Type: Journal
Publication Date: 2016-Feb
Pages: 10
Abstractor: As Provided
ISSN: ISSN-0255-7614
The Story of Carora: The Origins of El Sistema
Carlson, Alexandra
International Journal of Music Education, v34 n1 p64-73 Feb 2016
Venezuela's youth symphony program, the Fundación Musical Simón Bolívar, commonly referred to as "El Sistema," combines musical achievement with learning important life skills through orchestral practice and performance. Although the history most commonly reported outside Venezuela is of the program's director, José Antonio Abreu, hosting a rehearsal of music students in a Caracan parking lot in 1975, El Sistema's origins are equally owed to another orchestra. That same year, arts advocate Juan Martínez founded Venezuela's first children's orchestra in the Venezuelan city of Carora alongside three Chileans who previously taught for a similar program in Chile. I show that the two orchestras were frequent collaborators in the 1975-1977 period, a relationship that was essential in securing government and public support for the nascent Venezuelan program. I combine oral history and historiography to detail how the project in Carora began, define its relationship with Abreu's orchestra in Caracas, and describe its pedagogy, philosophy, and funding. Beyond illuminating a historical narrative that highlights the importance of both national and international cooperation in the development of youth orchestras in Venezuela, this research has broad implications for advocacy and development of musical programs, within and outside schools.
SAGE Publications. 2455 Teller Road, Thousand Oaks, CA 91320. Tel: 800-818-7243; Tel: 805-499-9774; Fax: 800-583-2665; e-mail:; Web site:
Publication Type: Journal Articles; Reports - Research
Education Level: N/A
Audience: N/A
Language: English
Sponsor: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A
Identifiers - Location: Venezuela
Grant or Contract Numbers: N/A