In 1975 Venezuela saw the creation of one of the most visionary projects ever undertaken in connection with classical music. It has been described as 'free classical music education that promotes human opportunity and development for impoverished children' and by 2015 around 400 centres were catering for a staggering 700,000 children.
One of its most significant manifestations is the enormous Simon Bolivar Youth Orchestra which gave extraordinary performances at the Edinburgh International Festival in 2007 under the baton of a Sistema graduate - Gustavo Dudamel. This visit had a startling effect in inspiring the creation of Sistema Scotland - The Big Noise - with the aim of 'equipping children with resilience and confidence to reach their potential across all areas of their lives'
There are now four centres in Scotland in Stirling, Glasgow, Dundee and Aberdeen teaching music to deprived children and transforming lives. It is simply one of the most heart warming projects of recent years.
Read all about Sistema Scotland here
Nicola Benedetti Sistema masterclass click here
Nicola Benedetti with Sistema Scotland click here
Scottish Venezuela orchestra play Scottish Medley - click here