23. June 2021 · Comments Off on It’s Not Just El Sistema · Categories: Teaching

From Arts Journal:

Sexual Abuse In El Sistema, Long Rumored, Is Now Being Brought To Light

A Facebook post in late April from an alumna of Venezuela’s famous system of free musical education “has since sparked a collective portrait of teenage girls in El Sistema being systematically groomed by older male teachers, with coercive innuendos and propositions as everyday occurrences.” Said one former student of her oboe teacher, “His methods rested on an uplifting discourse of art, passion and intellect. According to him, I had to let myself be carried away by sexual desire in order to achieve a full sound.” – The Washington Post

The stories from El Sistema get even worse: some female students have been impregnated by conductors or teachers.

But it’s not just El Sistema …

I’ve never had an abusive oboe instructor. I’m grateful. All have been respectful and kind. But others have, and things I have read are horrifying. Students need to be careful. Parents need to watch over their kids. And teachers who are abusive need to be reported, need to be fired, and, in my opinion, arrested.

But it seems not all are.

So this is just a reminder that there is abuse in the music teaching business. Stay safe!

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