Just saw tonight's
and his activities in Southern California as music director of the Los Angeles Philharmonic. But all the talk about El sistema, the compelling education program in Venezuela that helped Dudamel as a kid and that he has begun emulating in L.A., provided a perfect excuse to look at what's happening along these lines elsewhere around the country.
And that led right to a West Baltimore neighborhood (described in less than flattering terms, of course, and filmed back in the dead of winter), where the BSO's OrchKids program got a nice shout out. I'm glad this venture was alloted such valuable exposure on such a highly-watched show.
There was a decent amount of air time for BSO music director Marin Alsop, commenting on how the project can changing kids' lives, and good shots of the program's main administrator, Dan Trahey, and some of the teachers working with students. (It would be cool if Dudamel, who will be in DC Monday with the LA Phil, could zip up here and get a look at OrchKids himself.)
The effort to get music back into schools to start substantive training at an early age couldn't be more valuable or more necessary. Every step taken in any part of the country is worthy cheering.
PHOTO COURTESY OF CBS NEWS