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Music education can be a powerful tool for social change. El Sistema proves this daily. This video shares the story of El Sistema's humble beginnings, how quickly the movement grew throughout Venezuela and beyond, and how the program is thriving in Denver, Colorado.


It was an honor to collaborate with El Sistema Colorado to share this story. I have been documenting the growth of El Sistema Colorado since their first program in 2012 including the kids that are thriving because of it. Monika Vischer, the original Executive Director, wrote the script and I recorded Deborah Mendez-Wilson for the narration.


I included this video as an example of storytelling to help organizations communicate their mission, which is a significant part of my career. I enjoyed this project because I was given a lot of freedom to experiment. Animation techniques allowed me to tell the history of El Sistema in an engaging way. My role in this work was the lead producer and art director, illustrator, videographer, animator and editor. My mother, Patty McAuliffe, contributed the portrait of Jose Antonio Abreu and Gustavo Dudamel. My friend and colleague Vincent Camporetto taught me how to animate the more fluid movements using After Effects. Animation is an area I would like to continue growing since I enjoy making things by hand and I am not limited to what I can physically see and capture with a camera.


The song I used, Firetrucks on the Boardwalk, is performed by Devotchka with the Colorado Symphony Orchestra (CSO). El Sistema Colorado students performed this song with Devotchka and the CSO last Summer in front of a packed audience at Red Rocks Ampetheatre where they also screened this video.

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