Follow the links on this page to find biographies for the second class of Fellows, who completed the program in 2011.

Graciela Briceno
Boston, Massachusetts




David Gracia
New York, New York

"El Sistema is not only a social movement through music: it is a way of living. It is based on passion, hard work, solidarity, and honesty through music. These values are applied to any sphere of our lives."


Laura Jekel
Cincinnati, Ohio

"In most US colleges and universities, there is a large divide between training for music educators and music performers. It could benefit everyone involved to break this barrier, and foster the formation of musicians who see themselves both as performers and educators."


Steven Liu
Miami, Florida

"There are so many intangible lifelong skills that all of the arts have to offer our children, which include discipline, expression, the pursuit of something that will NEVER be perfect, and being an integral part of a larger community.


Marie Montilla
Boston, Massachusetts

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



Andrea Profili
Washington Heights, New York

"El Sistema is unique because it has broken down social barriers in two ways: offering a safe place for human beings to grow, and providing music education without any exceptions."


Elizabeth Schurgin
Washington, D.C.




Patrick Slevin
Austin, Texas

"Musicians in the 21st century need to learn to be proficient performers, educators, administrators, as well as active citizens."



Adrienne Taylor
Providence, Rhode Island

"I play music because I love it, but when I’m able to share it with others, especially those who don’t have access to it normally, it gives greater meaning to my life as a musician."


Isabel Trautwein
Cleveland, Ohio

"In El Sistema I see clearly that Classical Music can reach anyone anywhere if the situation is right."