Inspire 1.500 children through music in Greece

by Friends of El Sistema Greece
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Inspire 1.500 children through music in Greece
Inspire 1.500 children through music in Greece
Inspire 1.500 children through music in Greece
Inspire 1.500 children through music in Greece
Inspire 1.500 children through music in Greece
Inspire 1.500 children through music in Greece
Inspire 1.500 children through music in Greece
Inspire 1.500 children through music in Greece
Inspire 1.500 children through music in Greece
Inspire 1.500 children through music in Greece
Inspire 1.500 children through music in Greece
Inspire 1.500 children through music in Greece
Inspire 1.500 children through music in Greece
Inspire 1.500 children through music in Greece
Inspire 1.500 children through music in Greece
Inspire 1.500 children through music in Greece
Inspire 1.500 children through music in Greece
Inspire 1.500 children through music in Greece
Inspire 1.500 children through music in Greece

Dear Globalgivers,

The team of El Sistema Greece, greatly appreciates your commitment and your support. Our mission is to inspire children through music and your support plays a key role in achieving our goals, especially through the period of the global pandemic. Today, after COVID-19 shut down every physical activity and live music events around the world that made us find alternative ways of communication with our musicians and means to stay creative, we are finally back to our classes and on stage! 

In July and after a six-month lockdown that kept us away from any physical music activity we came back on stage in the most spectacular way, as we managed to deliver World A Music, a big concert in the framework of Athens Greek Festival, with the participation of our students who performed along with some popular Greek musicians in the Odeon of Herodes Atticus. In September 2021, our main headquarters where our classes take place, re-opened their doors for our young musicians who are very excited to be back and meet their teachers and friends. Old and new students as well as their parents are thrilled to have returned to the classes and the whole ESG team is so happy to see everyone’s smiling eyes (since our masks are still on!) when they are given back their instruments. During this month we also had the chance to get back on stage with a big music performance at the Greek National Opera which was a great beginning for the new music season and also filled us with excitement for the next one.

At the same time, in order to secure everyone’s safety, the administration team and our teachers had to take a series of measures against COVID-19, according to the official instructions from the Government. We must now balance the educational and social needs of our students with their health and safety in the midst of the evolving COVID-19 pandemic. Apart from keeping safe distances, we have to provide them with masks, antiseptics, special equipment such as plexi-glass shield stands and bell covers for our brasses, and put in place procedures we would have never thought relevant to the practice of music, like temperature and COVID certificates checking before each class and professional disinfection in each orchestra rehearsal.

Still, online music education was even more challenging both for us and our students and we are relieved to be back in the classrooms, despite the new reality that we have to adapt to. We all missed the human interaction which is such an important part of the education process, especially when the social integration of the musicians is a key target.  So no matter the challenges ahead, we are back, with big plans for the new artistic season and we are very optimistic that with hard work, a little luck and your invaluable support, this will be a super exciting year full of unforgettable music moments.

With our warmest wishes for each one of you and enormous appreciation,
Friends of El Sistema Greece team

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Dear GlobalGivers,

What an unusual year this has been! We almost turned our lives completely digital, we hadn’t seen each other for months, but we never lost our faith in the power of music and proved that when we stay together and focused on our goal, we can do miracles.

And -indeed- we did miracles! After 8 months of digital music lessons and rehearsals, this summer found us organising two big concerts. On June 14th, in El Sistema Greece we organised for the fourth year in a row, the Lullaby Project – a very special music project dedicated to parental love, in collaboration with Carnegie Hall in New York and the Stavros Niarchos Foundation Cultural Center. After a year and a half, our students had the chance to be on stage again, together with famous and talented Greek artists, singing unique music pieces written by Greek and Venezuelan composers and parents, who participated in the project, sharing their stories and experiences.

And there is more! July brings us on the spot again, as El Sistema Greece is proud to be part of the Athens Epidaurus Festival, one of the most significant art festivals in Europe, with an unexpected concert, called ‘’World A Music’’. The members of the El Sistema Greece Youth Orchestra and El Sistema Greece Youth Choir, join forces with the producer, musician and dj Blend Mishkin and famous Greek singers. On July 5, all together they are going to present new performances of favorite songs that marked contemporary music at the iconic Conservatory of Herodes Atticus. From Bob Marley, Lou Reed and James Brown to Dr. Dre, Massive Attack and Beyonce, El Sistema Greece and friends clearly prove that music has no geographical or temporal boundaries. It is a universal, timeless language, with the power to unite people of every nationality and every generation. Follow us on Facebook and Instagram to learn more about the concert and watch our superkids in action.

In El Sistema Greece we always try to offer our students as many artistic experiences as possible. On stage, the children are treated as true artists. They challenge external perceptions, collaborate with famous artists, create lifetime memories, and demonstrate their great potential to add value as part of a community. So, yes, this summer brought two precious gifts to El Sistema Greece and proved that hard work can never go to waste!

Thank you for your support. We promise you that we will be back in September with more ideas and even bigger passion. Have a very nice summer full of music and great times!

With much appreciation,

Friends of El Sistema Greece team

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Our true stories #3

Dear GlobalGivers,

Students of El Sistema Greece come from more than 30 different countries. Some of them are refugees and migrants, children left in limbo, lacking inspiration and dreams. The work we do, both with refugee children and with the larger local community encompassing both migrants and natives, aims to inspire them to strive for a better future while fostering healthy social dynamics in small communities, which are found in our classrooms and núcleos. El Sistema Greece is an educational community music program. Music is our superpower and the main tool we use to prompt children to become the persons they’re capable of being. 

A year ago, we started implementing our very own Young Leaders Program, based on one of the most common practices of the El Sistema methodology: encouraging the most advanced students to take over responsibilities during the lessons and support their teachers and the younger students. The first cohort of El Sistema Greece’s Young Leaders Program consists of 13 super-talented students, with origins from 5 different countries. The aim of the program was to empower and holistically prepare them to become tomorrow’s leaders. The students exceeded all expectations, managing to continuously collaborate, exchange thoughts and ideas even throughout a pandemic and three lockdowns! During their last online meetings, the leaders were seeking ways to express themselves through music. And this is how "Nostalgia’’ was born; their very first music piece, composed entirely by them, dedicated to all of us, as a reminder that life and music never stop. We hope you will enjoy it as much as we did!

 

Thank you for your support, you give us the strength to continue!

With much appreciation,

Friends of El Sistema Greece team

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Dear GlobalGivers,

El Sistema Greece started its musical journey in 2016 in Athens and the region of Attica. Within the years that followed we had to face several difficulties but we not only managed to survive but also many, many great things have happened and we can proudly now say that more than 2,500 children and youth have had access to our music lessons!

Up until recently, our main activities were located in Athens and the surrounding areas. However, in 2020 despite the pandemic -or maybe because of it- the need to reach even more children outside the big urban centers came up again and became very clear to us.

After a long summer, full of groundwork, meetings and planning, on Monday, October 14, El Sistema Greece turned a new page and kicked off its first-ever activities in the city of Corinth  -a small town in Peloponnese- with a series of violin, cello, clarinet and choir lessons, in collaboration with Fondation Kaloy. 

Despite the fact that the lessons have run for less than a month, the classes are already full and we are ready to add more hours of music, in order not to leave any children out of the program. Moreover, what makes us even happier and satisfied is that apart from the children who live in the city, children from the local Refugee Camp have also joined our classes and are already learning music with the El Sistema methodology as official members of our super music family. This may not sound so fancy, but actually... it is! Since last year there was no activity at all for children at the camp and they did not even go to the ordinary school. Thankfully, this season brought them more opportunities not only to get educated but also to go out of the camp, meet peers and discover their talents, as all children should do. During the next weeks, all the new students will join El Sistema Greece Youth Orchestra and El Sistema Greece Youth Choir and they will play music together!

We are very proud of this new nucleo of El Sistema Greece and we hope soon to be able to visit more cities in Greece and offer music education to as many kids as possible. With your support and the help of your donation, we are getting stronger and stronger.

Once again, THANK YOU!

With much appreciation,

Friends of El Sistema Greece team

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Dear GlobalGivers,

At El Sistema Greece we have a special mission: To support children, always, no matter what. Music is our tool and sometimes it turns into a superpower. This, unfortunately, does not make us superheroes…These past months affected us like everyone else in the world and we had to think and invent new ways to stay by our students’ side during the COVID-19 lockdown.

Following the general instruction STAY HOME, El Sistema Greece stopped all physical lessons for almost three months. From the safety of our homes, after many online meetings, phone calls and a lot of brainstorming, in literally two days, we created a new platform, full of online classes accessible to all our students. All the teachers were preparing a series of online tutorials on a weekly basis, helping children study at home. In that way, we took advantage of technology and ensured that this pandemic would not destroy what we had managed to build in years. And then, at the end of May, when the storm had calmed, we started with a few string lessons and we even organized a farewell rehearsal with the members of El Sistema Greece Youth Orchestra.

This musical gathering was incredibly special for everyone but especially for A., one of the first viola players of the orchestra. A. left Syria because of the war and after a very long journey through Turkey arrived at Skaramagas Refugee Camp in Athens five years ago. She had never studied music before. That was until she started learning to play the violin with us. She never liked it much, so it was a matter of time before she stopped coming to the lessons. But then, she discovered the viola, and a magical thing happened: she found her instrument and never missed a class. After only a month of practicing, she joined El Sistema Greece Youth Orchestra. Since then, she participated in all the concerts that the orchestra gave, traveled to Thessaloniki for a special side by side concert and became one of the most valuable members of the orchestra. This farewell rehearsal in June, the last one of the season, was the last one also for A., as she -alongside her father and older brother- are moving to the Netherlands, to reunite with her mother after almost six years.

A.’s story is one of the stories with a happy ending and fortunately, it is not the only one. We are incredibly happy to witness children and young people blooming and moving forward. We are grateful to have you with us on this. Through the help of your donation, we are getting stronger.

Thank you!

With much appreciation,
Friends of El Sistema Greece team

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Organization Information

Friends of El Sistema Greece

Location: Washington, DC - USA
Website:
Facebook: Facebook Page
Twitter: @elsistemagreece
Project Leader:
Alexandra Strelcova
Washington, DC United States
$7,679 raised of $7,650 goal
 
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