The Sistema Aotearoa orchestra of beginner violin and cello players, conducted by Dr Joe Harrop, performs Beethoven for an enthusiastic audience of supporters. Based on the famous Venezuelan music programme, El Sistema, the movement uses orchestral music-making as a means of achieving social development. Children who might not otherwise have the opportunity to learn a musical instrument – in this case children from low-decile schools in Ōtara, South Auckland – are taught according to a philosophy that emphasises cooperative learning and family and community support. The children start learning at Year 2 and carry on until they are fully proficient on their instrument. The programme has been shown to give children confidence, resilience and a sense of achievement.
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