In Sunday’s (7/18) Boston Globe, Jeremy Eichler writes about Rebecca Levi and David Malek, recent graduates of the first class of New England Conservatory’s Abreu Fellows program. “The El Sistema phenomenon is creating what might be called an inspiration bump, for lifelong music educators like Mark Churchill, the director of El Sistema USA, and for a crop of new leaders like Levi and Malek, who are gearing up to start bringing the Venezuelan vision to cities across the United States. … Before they left for Venezuela, many of the Abreu fellows began fielding queries from US-based community programs interested in hiring them. Levi and Malek met with Diana Lam, executive director of [Boston’s] Conservatory Lab Charter School, which is located in Brighton but has students from Dorchester, Mattapan, Roxbury, Hyde Park, and most other Boston neighborhoods.… Next year, the school will expand its day by an hour and a half, five days a week, in order to carve out a three-hour time block every afternoon for El Sistema-modeled training of two full student orchestras. In addition to Levi and Malek, it will hire 14 ‘resident musicians’ as part-time instructors to teach an array of orchestral instruments.”

Posted July 20, 2010