A Sistema baton gets an LA job

A Sistema baton gets an LA job


norman lebrecht

August 20, 2014

Juan Felipe Molano, a graduate of the Colombian offshoot of Venezuela’s El Sistema, has been named director of the youth orchestra of Los Angeles, Yola. ‘He’s a great inspiration,’ said Gustavo Dudamel, the LA Phil’s music director.

Colombia has the world’s second-largest network of Sistema youth orchestras, after Venezuela.




  • Milka says:

    I am positive everyone searched high and low for just the” right ” conductor to head up the youth orchestra ..what interests is that in the US not
    one music school or conservatory of
    music seemed competent enough to provide a candidate for this modest position while meeting with the high standards required
    by the likes of Mr. Dudamel and co.
    Our music schools are failing us if we
    have to constantly go outside our borders to find talent . I am positive Mr. Molano is a fine person
    and musician but to believe one cannot find similar talent within the US is more than disconcerting and raises the question .. what is required to hold such a modest position
    that US higher music education is not providing ?

  • suzanne says:

    Did you ever look at the full job description? What the LA Phil was looking for can in no way be described as a “modest position”, the experience and credentials called for were quite something. Norman, perhaps you or one of your readers can find a means to retrieve it? From memory it would have been difficult to find 10 international candidates available for the coming season who met the LA Phil’s requirements.

  • Alex says:

    Well, he has the hair, anyway.

  • Milka says:

    Yes , all those qualifications !!!!!!!! only
    a graduate from the Colombian offshoot
    of El Sistema would have all the necessary requirements plus the hair .

    • M2N2K says:

      Apparently, people in charge think that this particular person does have the necessary qualifications. If you disagree with them, you should explain why and name your preferred alternative, instead of throwing around implied accusations that are based on generalized prejudices and subjective stereotypes.

      • Rgiarola says:


        I’m astonished by your comment. Both Milka and Alex agree that this particular person does have the necessary qualifications. He has the hair. Why is it a prejudice to like a good hair shacking in the podium? Are you really against the present fashion? Although you got such a radical perspective, we must respect your position.