Monday, January 31, 2011
Thursday, January 27, 2011
This is what most of Boston and the street we live in looks like. I remember Jamie Bernstein saying how much she loved snow in NY: because the city never looks that clean - until you get all that slush!
- open lines of communication in the community you are planning to move into (through some type of survey) in order to see the needs and challenges that community might be facing
- the hardest job is to manage people - and it is a skill that is learned
- Create a process so that you know what you want to get out of the applicant (clear job description), know what they are about.
- Looking at CV = Sebastian equated it to being INTEL. Check for references, but also relevant work experienced that are not mentioned as references
- During the interview create a scenario relevant to the work they will be doing to see how they respond to pressure
- Hire on strengths of individuals, and assign them on tasks that emphasize those areas
- create a learning organization
- are you creating space to learn? (teachers, students, staff)
- conflict is inevitable - train staff to resolve conflicts. This, in my opinion, is vital to the success of the organization
- share leadership - be clear about the role and job assigned
Wednesday, January 19, 2011
It takes guts to follow and stand out! Nurture your first follower as equal.
A movement must be public, you must show the followers.
Leadership is over glorified!!
Similar to an epidemic spreads, El Sistema will be more effectively “contagious” by conglomerating in highly populated areas, rather than sporadic segregated growth throughout the country. Maybe comparing ES to an epidemic is not an elegant analogy, but both operate socially. That is, we look at our surroundings and follow trends. The perfect example: Facebook began by connecting a community of students, enabling instant communication between friends, leading folks to acquaintances, mutual friends, and total strangers. Your friends have it, and so do you in order to keep up with them. Like Ben Zander would say: This opens a world of possibilities.
I am excited that some of the fellows and myself are thinking of staying in Boston. The communication between CLCS, Zumix and others would become more fluid, perhaps sharing venues (a particular hall). Seemingly small things like these could really start a movement.
Initial conversations were of starting ES Boston, however the amount of capital necessary would have been enormous. No one has forbidden us from settling where other programs have settled, and perhaps we can think of the proximity of other programs as an advantage that can help narrow the search for a location.
One of the reasons El Sistema works is that it has created a continuum. Programs in Venezuela are coordinated through FESNOJIV, at local, state, and national levels. If a child moves, there is a nucleo accessible to them. This is how they created perpetuity - starting locally. This has to be our long-term goal as an ES community.
Friday, January 14, 2011
Here is a video of my time in Argentina these past weeks. The first clip is from a tango show, the second is jam session in a conventillo of la Boca, Bs. As. Guillermo (bass) called me and said, how would you like to go to a jam session of candombe and tango? I said I’m there. Mamma, nos metimos en la boca del lobo!! We got there with my mum, and my uncles and they said, we should go back! But, for some reason we decided to go in - as scary as the neighborhood looked, the hosts of the house were wonderful!
I also made a contact of a bandoneón player called Bruno Ferreccio, a wonderful teacher and performer. I took a couple of lessons and got excited about learning bandoneon seriously, however they are a wee expensive (US$4,000), and I don’t really have the commitment to change profession. The bandoneón is a magnificent instrument, and tough to play! Maybe I will - when I am 64!
Monday, January 10, 2011
Please allow me to share information about the Abreu Fellows Program, based at New England Conservatory.
The Abreu Fellows Program provides tuition-free instruction and a needs-based living stipend for outstanding, young postgraduate musicians and music educators, “passionate for their art and for social justice,” who seek to guide the development of El Sistema programs in the U.S. El Sistema is Venezuela's celebrated youth orchestra program that has given us Gustavo Dudamel and the amazing Simón Bolívar Youth Orchestra.
The academic year-long program provides Fellows with in-depth knowledge of the mission and musical methodology of the El Sistema vision, so brilliantly pioneered in Venezuela. In addition, the Fellows are instructed in music education methodologies, leadership, organizational development and management, fundraising and working with underserved youth and communities. The program includes a three-week U.S. internship as well as shorter visits to U.S. El Sistema-inspired programs, and a two-month residency in Venezuela.
Pending confirmation of funding, the program will start August 29, 2011. We would appreciate it if you would distribute the information below to Advisors, Faculty members, Career Services personnel, Deans, Alumni Officers, and anyone else who has direct contact with graduating seniors, graduate students who are completing their degrees this year, and alumni who graduated approximately ten years ago or fewer. We are looking for only ten Fellows, but we want to publicize the opportunity widely so as to attract those individuals most suited to our program. The Application Deadline is February 14, 2011.
If you would like more information about the Abreu Fellows Program, please email me at firstname.lastname@example.org. Thank you for your collaboration.
Abreu Fellows Program
New England Conservatory
Monday, January 3, 2011
Here is a video of our visit to the Harmony Program Christmas Concert in NY. Thank you so much to Anne and the staff for opening the doors of the program!