Teaching More Than Music

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Can music fight gangs and poverty? That was the question 30 years ago in Venezuela, where a group of musicians formed El Sistema. The program had some real success and is now world-wide. El Sistema teaches kids in poor neighborhoods to play music. This was El Sistema’s first year in Colorado at an elementary school in north Denver called Garden Place Academy. Kindergartners and 3rd graders began learning to play instruments like the violin and cello in January. William Hinkie teaches the children. Host Ryan Warner speaks with Hinkie and with 8-year old Armando Lopez and his mother Claudia.

Click here to watch a video of Colorado Public Radio's Monika Vischer talking about the El Sistema program at Garden Place, and see some of the kids in action.

[Photo CPR News/Ryan Warner]