How many inspirational people have you come across in your life? How many have succeeded in realising what, to most, must have seemed the impossible? Were the vision, passion and necessary humility obvious when they spoke? These thoughts ran through my head when I watched José Antonio Abreu , founder of Venezuela’s music education programme, El Sistema, and one of the winners of the TED Prize 2009.

Here he movingly explains the philosophy behind, and the history of, El Sistema as a prelude to announcing his TED wish.

There is also gripping performance by the Teresa Carreño Youth Orchestra (national high-school-age orchestra) conducted by one of El Sistema’s meteoric stars, Gustavo Dudamel.

Further links:

interview on EncontrArte website (in Spanish)

acceptance speech upon winning the Right Livelihood Award (in English)


One thought on “Inspiration”

  1. Dear Alan,
    I have a tear in my eye!!
    Thank you for bringing this very eloquent gentleman to my attention. What a speech. What truth.
    The world of music needs more folk like him.
    The kids seem to have a joie de vivre (did you notice them swaying while playing in the orchestra?) that must have come from the spirit of this great man.
    Wow, he is wise.
    Ps Gustavo Dudamel is living proof that the system works. What a honey he is.

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