John Malveaux of www.MusicUNTOLD.com writes:
Tuesday evening February 25, 2014, I journeyed by MTA train from Long Beach to attend a free Concert (Tchaikovsky Fest) featuring Gustavo Dudamel's Venezuelan orchestra performing alongside members of Youth Orchestra of Los Angeles (YOLA) within the magnificent Cathedral of our Lady of the Angeles.
"The musicians of the Simon Bolvar Symphony Orchestra of Venezuela grew up through the extraordinary music education program El Sistema and generously teach and mentor the young musicians of YOLA whenever they are in Los Angeles. YOLA students strive to create a Los Angeles version of El Sistema in South L.A., the Rampart District, and in the Eastern portion of the County through their dedication of 15 hours each week to learning their instruments, playing in the orchestra, and contributing to the creation of an artful and compassionate community".
The concert was more than a superb performance by ethnically diverse trained youth. I sensed a prevailing hope and confidence for future generations and the power of music to help solve global problems. I said a prayer for continued success and expansion of El Sistema to Africa.