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APO Sistema Aotearoa: kids changing their lives through music

Event Information

  • When: Wednesday, June 11, 2014
  • Time: 8.00 - 9.00am
  • Where: Big Rangitoto Room, Lab Plus
  • Presenter: Dr Joe Harrop, Programme Director, Sistema Aotearoa

Sistema Aotearoa uses orchestral music-making as a model for social development. It is based on El Sistema, one of the world's most successful music and social development programmes. Sistema Aotearoa's approach considers all aspects of a child's development and works to integrate these creating benefits that go beyond the development of musical ability. This wider, pastoral care is a critical success factor in engaging the children and impacting on their well-being. The benefits of the programme include the development of intangible skills and qualities that are vital for positive personal development.
Led by Dr Joe Harrop and based at Otara Music Arts Centre (OMAC), Sistema Aotearoa provides group tuition in a community setting in school, after school and in holidays. Musicianship and the skills of playing an orchestral instrument are taught in a way that is suitable to the age group and community involved. Students receive high quality tuition through a carefully structured curriculum and excel musically.

The recent AUT independent evaluation report on the social outcomes of Sistema Aotearoa concluded there was promising early evidence that the programme was positively contributing to a range of social, developmental, musical and educational outcomes.

Dr Joe Harrop, Programme Director
Dr Joe Harrop leads the Sistema Aotearoa team as Programme Director. Dr Joe is a New Zealand violinist and music educator of international caliber. Of Polynesian descent, Joe established the programme in Otara, and he embodies the energy, spirit and vision of El Sistema in a New Zealand context. In 2013, Dr Joe was awarded a Sir Peter Blake Emerging Leader Award. This year, he has been elected as an Associate of the Royal Academy of Music in recognition of his significant contribution to the music profession.

Ros Giffney, Programme Facilitator
As a highly experienced paediatric developmental therapist, Ros Giffney has been part of Sistema Aotearoa since its inception in April 2011. Having worked in the health and education sectors in the UK and New Zealand, Ros brings a special set of skills to the programme. A key part of her work is integrating and enhancing the behavioural and social development of the students and evaluating the longer term outcomes in those areas. Ros was instrumental in developing and implementing an holistic approach to effectively engagde the children and impact on their well-being, in addition to their whanau and the wider community. The strength and success of this approach has seen Sistema Aotearoa become a leader among El Sistema programmes worldwide

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