Follow the links on this page to find biographical information for the first class of Fellows, who completed the program in 2010.

Berkowitz thumbnailDan Berkowitz
Philadelphia, Pennsylvania

"From a very early age, this type of education provides a skill set far beyond the discipline of music."



Jonathan Govias thumbnailJonathan Govias
Charlotte, North Carolina

"All the arts demand creativity and discipline, but music is uniquely and inherently a social activity, a live communication and interaction between equals."


Lorrie Heagy thumbnailLorrie Heagy
Juneau, Alaska

"El Sistema's success relies on the intensity of its directors, the power of group experience and peer mentorship, and participation at an early age, when life is consumed by music!"


Rebecca Levi thumbnailRebecca Levi
Medellin, Colombia



David Malek thumbnailDavid Malek
Cleveland, Ohio

"Music gives the child a creative language that will allow him to connect the dots in life and therefore create a life of meaning."



Dantes Rameau thumbnailDantes Rameau
Atlanta, Georgia

"I read about Gustavo Dudamel and since then I’ve come to learn that wherever Dudamel is, El Sistema is not far behind."



Alvaro Rodas thumbnailAlvaro Rodas
New York, New York

"I want to start a 'nucleo' to serve Hispanic children, especially Central Americans living in New York City."



Stanford ThompsonStanford Thompson
Philadelphia, Pennsylvania

"I have found a greater reward in using my musical talents for the benefit of education and serving communities than I have performing in the world's best concert halls."



Christine Witkowski thumbnailChristine Witkowski
Philadelphia, Pennsylvania

"As a dyslexic kid, I was constantly behind in school because I didn’t learn the way classes were taught. However, when I started band, I discovered I could process music my own way and still excel."


Kathryn Wyatt thumbnailKathryn Wyatt
Durham, North Carolina

"Through providing a shared arena of communication for people of all languages, cultures and colors, music could create a premise for empathy."