Changing Lives: Gustavo Dudamel, El Sistema, and the Transformative Power of Music

( 4 )

Overview

When Gustavo Dudamel, at the age of twenty-eight, ascended the podium at the Hollywood Bowl for his inaugural concert as conductor of the Los Angeles Philharmonic, he immediately captivated the hearts of his audience, just as he had the minds of music critics who designated him a modern-day Leonard Bernstein.

In Changing Lives, the maestro's story becomes the entry point to an equally captivating subject: El Sistema, the music education program that nurtured his musical talent, ...

See more details below
Other sellers (Hardcover)
  • All (16) from $1.99   
  • New (9) from $11.29   
  • Used (7) from $1.99   
Changing Lives: Gustavo Dudamel, El Sistema, and the Transformative Power of Music

Available on NOOK devices and apps  
  • NOOK Devices
  • Samsung Galaxy Tab 4 NOOK 7.0
  • Samsung Galaxy Tab 4 NOOK 10.1
  • NOOK HD Tablet
  • NOOK HD+ Tablet
  • NOOK eReaders
  • NOOK Color
  • NOOK Tablet
  • Tablet/Phone
  • NOOK for Windows 8 Tablet
  • NOOK for iOS
  • NOOK for Android
  • NOOK Kids for iPad
  • PC/Mac
  • NOOK for Windows 8
  • NOOK for PC
  • NOOK for Mac
  • NOOK for Web

Want a NOOK? Explore Now

NOOK Book (eBook)
$10.49
BN.com price
(Save 38%)$16.95 List Price

Overview

When Gustavo Dudamel, at the age of twenty-eight, ascended the podium at the Hollywood Bowl for his inaugural concert as conductor of the Los Angeles Philharmonic, he immediately captivated the hearts of his audience, just as he had the minds of music critics who designated him a modern-day Leonard Bernstein.

In Changing Lives, the maestro's story becomes the entry point to an equally captivating subject: El Sistema, the music education program that nurtured his musical talent, first as a young violinist and then as a budding conductor under the mentorship of its founder, José Antonio Abreu. What began in Venezuela has now reached children in Los Angeles, New York City, Baltimore, and cities around the world. No matter the location, the overarching goal of El Sistema is unwavering: to rescue children from the depredations of poverty through music. Part history, part reportage, this book reveals that arts education can indeed effect positive social change.

Read More Show Less

Editorial Reviews

Publishers Weekly
Every day in Venezuela, nearly 400,000 children—mostly from poor families—spend hours learning music and playing in the country’s hundreds of youth orchestras. Gustavo Dudamel, the 28-year-old conductor, is perhaps the most famous product of these music programs, and journalist Tunstall, in a compelling, readable book that is part history and part social activism, uses Dudamel’s youthful exuberance and enthusiasm for music and these programs as an example of the way that music education can be a tool for social transformation. More than 40 years ago, Tunstall explains, Venezuelan musician and economist José Antonio Abreu, himself once a poor young man from the countryside, founded El Sistema, a nationwide music education program funded primarily by the government. Abreu’s vision for the program is simple but revolutionary: music can save lives and be a potent vehicle in the fight against the perils of childhood poverty, such as gang membership, drugs, and violence. Abreu believes that if you put a violin in the hands of a needy child, that child will not pick up a gun; a child who holds an instrument feels entrusted with something of value and feels competent, worthwhile, and empowered to teach others. El Sistema has been so effective in Venezuela that programs like it are starting to develop in the U. S. and other parts of the world, and Tunstall urges state and local governments to consider establishing such programs in their communities. (Jan.)
Library Journal
Gustavo Dudamel, the young and exuberant conductor of the Los Angeles Philharmonic Orchestra, is the most famous graduate of El Sistema, the remarkable music education program in Venezuela, whose laudable purpose is to use the experience of orchestral playing as a means of giving new meaning to the lives of impoverished children. The twin goals of equal access and artistic excellence have resulted in dozens of outstanding youth orchestras that have captivated audiences and won international prizes. The phenomenal success of this 35-year-old program has spawned El Sistema-like organizations in the United States, where many communities are seeking novel ways of turning low-income youth away from drugs and violence. Tunstall (Note by Note: A Celebration of the Piano Lesson), a music educator, has witnessed her subject firsthand by traveling to Venezuela and interviewing dozens of children and teachers in the program, including their venerable founder, José Abreu. VERDICT This passionate and inspiring story should be read by all those interested in music education, community building, and advocacy for the disadvantaged. An essential purchase. [See Prepub Alert, 7/11/11.]—Larry Lipkis, Moravian Coll., Bethlehem, PA
Kirkus Reviews
The story of "El Sistema, an extraordinary program for children and youth in Venezuela, where music education and social reform have been fused on a national scale with astonishing results." Music educator Tunstall (Note by Note: A Celebration of the Piano Lesson, 2008) traveled to South America, California and elsewhere to explore the El Sistema's global groundswell. Founded in 1975 by pianist José Antonio Abreu, the movement, which currently serves nearly 300,000 underprivileged children throughout Venezuela alone, seeks to develop civic engagement and social responsibility by engaging youth with the rigors of the musical discipline and the interpersonal dynamics of playing in an instrumental ensemble. El Sistema has been profoundly successful, earning massive government support in Venezuela and spawning dozens of offshoots throughout the world, including the United States. Having produced arguably the most celebrated conductor today, 30-year-old Gustavo Dudamel, the program has become the most symbolic example of the social relevance that classical music can have in today's cultural landscape. Tunstall soundly probes how it is that classical music has played such a powerful role in the protection, education and elevation of so many children born into poverty. The author does a noble job tracing the history of El Sistema, while managing to keep the narrative as much in the immediate present as possible. Occasionally, Tunstall's otherwise enjoyable and sincere narrative becomes infected with the hyperbole endemic to classical music culture. Transformation, intellectual awe and spiritual uplift are notions that have always coded classical music with elitism while masking its deep anxiety over its own relevancy. Yet the author does readers a service by drawing attention to the group energy, individual artistry and organizational power that the social structures of classical music require. Tunstall is at times flatly earnest, even sappy, but never at the expense of conveying what is truly inspiring about her subject.
Quincy Jones
“Essential reading for every one of us who cares passionately about our neediest children.”
Deborah Borda
“We are fortunate to have the story of El Sistema related so eloquently.”
Read More Show Less

Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780393078961
  • Publisher: Norton, W. W. & Company, Inc.
  • Publication date: 1/23/2012
  • Pages: 320
  • Sales rank: 700,890
  • Product dimensions: 6.50 (w) x 9.72 (h) x 1.10 (d)

Meet the Author

Tricia Tunstall is both a writer and a music educator. The author of Changing Lives and Note by Note: A Celebration of the Piano Lesson, she has written for the Kenyon Review and the New York Times. She lives in Maplewood, New Jersey.

Read More Show Less

Table of Contents

Prelude: Gustavo and Me ix

Chapter 1 Bienvenido Gustavo!: Hollywood's Unlikely New Star 1

Chapter 2 "Mambo!": A First Glimpse of El Sistema 26

Chapter 3 To Play and to Struggle: The Evolution of El Sistema 52

Chapter 4 Dancing with Cellos: The Simón Bolívar Youth Orchestra of Venezuela 97

Chapter 5 An Idea Worth Spreading 129

Chapter 6 "Being, Not Yet Being": El Sistema in Action 154

Chapter 7 Faces of El Sistema USA 213

Chapter 8 Gracias Gustavo; Healing Communities in Los Angeles 246

CODA: Loving Needy Children Well 269

Acknowledgments 275

Index 279

Read More Show Less

Customer Reviews

Average Rating 4.5
( 4 )
Rating Distribution

5 Star

(3)

4 Star

(0)

3 Star

(1)

2 Star

(0)

1 Star

(0)

Your Rating:

Your Name: Create a Pen Name or

Barnes & Noble.com Review Rules

Our reader reviews allow you to share your comments on titles you liked, or didn't, with others. By submitting an online review, you are representing to Barnes & Noble.com that all information contained in your review is original and accurate in all respects, and that the submission of such content by you and the posting of such content by Barnes & Noble.com does not and will not violate the rights of any third party. Please follow the rules below to help ensure that your review can be posted.

Reviews by Our Customers Under the Age of 13

We highly value and respect everyone's opinion concerning the titles we offer. However, we cannot allow persons under the age of 13 to have accounts at BN.com or to post customer reviews. Please see our Terms of Use for more details.

What to exclude from your review:

Please do not write about reviews, commentary, or information posted on the product page. If you see any errors in the information on the product page, please send us an email.

Reviews should not contain any of the following:

  • - HTML tags, profanity, obscenities, vulgarities, or comments that defame anyone
  • - Time-sensitive information such as tour dates, signings, lectures, etc.
  • - Single-word reviews. Other people will read your review to discover why you liked or didn't like the title. Be descriptive.
  • - Comments focusing on the author or that may ruin the ending for others
  • - Phone numbers, addresses, URLs
  • - Pricing and availability information or alternative ordering information
  • - Advertisements or commercial solicitation

Reminder:

  • - By submitting a review, you grant to Barnes & Noble.com and its sublicensees the royalty-free, perpetual, irrevocable right and license to use the review in accordance with the Barnes & Noble.com Terms of Use.
  • - Barnes & Noble.com reserves the right not to post any review -- particularly those that do not follow the terms and conditions of these Rules. Barnes & Noble.com also reserves the right to remove any review at any time without notice.
  • - See Terms of Use for other conditions and disclaimers.
Search for Products You'd Like to Recommend

Recommend other products that relate to your review. Just search for them below and share!

Create a Pen Name

Your Pen Name is your unique identity on BN.com. It will appear on the reviews you write and other website activities. Your Pen Name cannot be edited, changed or deleted once submitted.

 
Your Pen Name can be any combination of alphanumeric characters (plus - and _), and must be at least two characters long.

Continue Anonymously
Sort by: Showing all of 4 Customer Reviews
  • Anonymous

    Posted May 16, 2012

    Highly Recommended - you must check it out!

    Loved this book ... unconditionally!

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
  • Posted March 18, 2012

    Highly reccomended

    If you know about El Sistema of even if you don't this is a must read you will be glued to the book and not be able to put it down . It will remind you why you are involved with music . It is an amazing true story

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
  • Anonymous

    Posted January 23, 2012

    No text was provided for this review.

  • Anonymous

    Posted October 27, 2012

    No text was provided for this review.

Sort by: Showing all of 4 Customer Reviews

If you find inappropriate content, please report it to Barnes & Noble
Why is this product inappropriate?
Comments (optional)