El Sistema’s 500-year history

[30/03/2015] A few months ago I wrote a short article linking El Sistema to precedents in European music education, starting with the orphanages of Renaissance Venice. However, it turns out that Roberto Grossi, director of the Italian version of El Sistema, had already made the connection back in 2011, when he announced: “We want to resume the traditions of Antonio Vivaldi in the Venetian orphanage of La Piedad.” It seems like I was on the right track in this article. Is anyone going to carry on claiming that El Sistema is new and revolutionary?