National Alliance Update

Dear National Alliance Members,

Last month we wrote to you as we were knee-deep in our strategic planning process and board development. Our eyes were a little bit bigger than the task of prioritizing the services and information which would best assist our members in the sustainability of existing initiatives, encouraging new initiatives, and garnering wider support for El Sistema-inspired programs nationally. Our Vice-Chair, Richard Mukamal, lead our strategic management committee in creating a sound plan to help us develop new initiatives while building upon the hard work of others in the field. As we develop these initiatives, we will need your active participation and feedback to ensure that we respond in real time to your needs. Richard could not have pulled off this enormous task without the help of the committee from the Board: Mark Churchill, Laura Jekel, Camille Kolles, and Anna Klimala-Pietraszko.

We are very happy to introduce our first three initiatives, of many to come:

The new Job Bank is a national resource of job opportunities and will occasionally post international positions. You’ll find teaching and administrative jobs at all levels, while connecting those passionate about social development through music education to opportunities in your programs.

To submit a job to this database, simply send an e-mail to with a link and/or PDF description of the administrative and/or teaching positions you have. I encourage you all to submit any open positons before Monday, June 3rd, before we publicly announce this resource to the field.

NAESIP Monthly Conference Calls
This summer (June through August), we plan to focus on program development and evaluation/research through a series of monthly conference calls. This will be an opportunity to talk with the most experienced leaders and researchers in the United States that are familiar with the development of El Sistema initiatives in the country. I would encourage you all to participate in these calls. There will be plenty of opportunities to share and learn from one another. Daniel Trahey (OrchKids Director) will lead the first call on program development and Dr. Steven Holochwost (Researcher at WolfBrown) will lead the first call on evaluation and research. We will soon announce the the entire summer schedule, but want you to set aside the following dates and times to participate. A reminder with conference call information will be supplied one week in advance.

  • Program Development w/ Dan Trahey – Tuesday, June 11th – 11:30am-1pm EST
  • Evaluation & Research w/ Dr. Steven Holochwost – Monday, June 25th – 11:30am-1pm EST

Data Collection
José Antonio Abreu, founder of El Sistema, has often said that “El Sistema is not a system but a process.” He encourages all of us not to copy the work of El Sistema but to create solutions that fit the needs of our own communities throughout the United States and the world. In that spirit, we encourage all of the El Sistema inspired programs (the Process) to contribute to the Repertoire+Resource initiative by sharing repertoire, organizational documents, evaluation/research, and readings you have found to be helpful in your journey. It will be as useful as we all make it through our contributions. Here are several examples of what we are looking for:

  • Musical arrangements
  • Evaluation/Assessment reports
  • Organizational documents like sample budgets, contracts, logic models, and successful grant applications.
  • Articles, essays, and speeches
  • Suggested books
  • Curriculum & teaching resources

Email repertoire as PDFs or MIDIs, and resources as WORD documents or PDFs to


Stanford Thompson, Chair
National Alliance of El Sistema Inspired Programs


About Stanford Thompson

Stanford Thompson is a musician and educator who is passionate about using music for social action and serves as the Founder and Executive Director for the El Sistema-inspired program, Play On, Philly! and the Chairman of El Sistema USA. He also serves on the boards of the Interlochen Center for the Arts, the Philadelphia Chapter of the American Composers Forum, and as Chairman of The Curtis Institute of Music Alumni Network. He regularly contributes to the communities of TED, League of American Orchestras, and El Sistema-inspired initiatives around the world. For El Sistema inspired programs he has implemented, Stanford has secured over $8.5 million in funding which has impacted the lives of hundreds of children in Philadelphia. Trained as a professional trumpeter, Mr. Thompson has performed with the Seoul Philharmonic Orchestra, Curtis Symphony Orchestra, Lancaster Symphony Orchestra, Symphony in C and recorded on the Ondine label with Christoph Eschenbach. Stanford also appeared as soloist with the Atlanta Symphony Orchestra, Ocean City Pops Orchestra and the North Springs Philharmonic. He has lead residencies with Philos Brass in Milford, Pennsylvania and Atlanta, Georgia where they performed recitals and outreach presentations, presented master classes, and conducted clinics. In the jazz idiom, Stan has performed for the Berks Jazz Festival, performed on the Washington College Concert Series and presented for the opening gala of the Philadelphia Orchestra with the Rittenhouse Jazz Quintet. Stanford is a native of Atlanta, GA and holds degrees from The Curtis Institute of Music and the New England Conservatory’s Abreu Fellows Program.
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2 Responses to National Alliance Update

  1. Katie says:

    I’m looking forward to the call with WolfBrown! Is it Monday June 24 or Tuesday June 25? Thanks! Katie

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