Wednesday, June 23, 2010

The Venezuelan brass ensemble

The Venezuelan Brass Ensemble came into being in 2004 from Venezuela's state youth orchestra system (FESNOJIV).

This unique, State-sponsored system comprises some 200 children's and young people's orchestras. Its members come from various parts of the country and from different youth orchestras, most of them integrated into the musical and academic syllabus of the national youth orchestra, the Simon Bolivar Youth Symphony Orchestra of Venezuela.

The Venezuelan Brass Ensemble has set itself the task of giving fresh impetus to brass-instrument education in Venezuela. Since its foundation under the patronage of José Antonio Abreu, father of the Venezuelan orchestral movement, the Venezuelan Brass Ensemble has raised its professionalism to a high level with the exemplary support of internationally recognized musicians. Thanks to the academic guardianship assumed by the Berlin Philharmonic, and the financial support given by the Inter-American Development Bank, high-calibre teachers have been signed up for master classes in Venezuela.

The first international tour under the direction of Thomas Clamor in 2005 took the Venezuelan Brass Ensemble to Colombia, Peru, Ecuador and Chile, featuring concerts and also workshops with local professors for brass.

In Venezuela itself, the national youth orchestra is a regular guest in established concert series. In September 2005, in the ­course of the Youth Symphony Orchestra's major tour of Germany, the ensemble made its German debut in Hamburg at the ­Kinder zum Olymp conference; its programme included classical works by Byrd, Bernstein and Gershwin and featured the first performance of the Grand Fanfare for brass instruments by Giancarlo Castro.

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