Director, Corona Youth Music ProjectAlvaro Abreu Fellow

Queens, New York


Alvaro Rodas has been involved with El Sistema since 1998 in his native country, Guatemala, where he was on the leadership team that hosted its first replication in Guatemala in 1997. He then worked as a teacher and mentor for a new generation of young musicians in all across Guatemala until 2004. Alvaro also taught percussion at the Guatemala National Conservatory, and was the principal percussionist at the Guatemala National Symphony. He received a Fulbright scholarship to complete a Masters degree in Arts Administration at Columbia University in 2006. In 2009 Alvaro was selected as part of the inaugural class of the Sistema Fellows Program.

A direct result of this fellowship was the creation of the Corona Youth Music Project in 2010. The project started as a grass roots initiative to engage the Corona community in adopting a new music education program with no precedents in the neighborhood. In 2014, the CYMP has 200 students in three orchestras and a choir.

In 2010, Alvaro was also a consultant for the government of El Salvador to help develop the plan for their national system of youth and children’s orchestras and choirs.


Photo: Alvaro Rodas