Title - 'El Sistema 40 - A Celebration'
Artist - Gustavo Dudamel
For those not in the classical know, Gustavo Adolfo Dudamel Ramírez is a Venezuelan conductor and violinist. He is the music director of the Orquesta Sinfónica Simón Bolívar and the Los Angeles Philharmonic. He is also honorary conductor of the Gothenburg Symphony Orchestra in Gothenburg, Sweden.
Those that are in the know, knows Gustavo Dudamel today as one of the biggest names in the conducting business. But it wasn't always so. Once he was just a schoolboy in Barquisimeto. Dudamel's parents had enrolled him in music classes at their local núcleo, part of Venezuela's music education program.
Affectionately known as El Sistema, the National System of Youth and Children's Orchestras and Choirs of Venezuela does a great deal more than merely keep youngsters off the streets. Music really did change my life, says Dudamel today. El Sistema gave our society two priceless gifts: the gift of appreciating beauty, and the gift of striving for artistic excellence.
El Sistema 40 - A Celebration is just that, a celebration of its first 40 years in the form of a selection of Classical masterpieces and Latin American lollipops in characteristically colorful and vibrant performances from its flagship orchestra, the Simón Bolivar Symphony Orchestra of Venezuela. Under its star conductor, Gustavo Dudamel, listening to this music might not "change" your life, but it should most definitely inspire it.
Indeed, El Sistema's ensembles are based on social cohesion and grow older along with their members. So the aforementioned Simón Bolívar Youth Orchestra has grown into the Simón Bolívar Symphony Orchestra and become one of the world's most popular ensembles, with the Teresa Carreño Youth Orchestra following in its footsteps, and younger groups close behind them.