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New book about El Sistema paints unflattering portrait
New book about El Sistema paints unflattering portrait

When Geoffrey Baker, a music professor at Royal Holloway, University of London, traveled to Venezuela to work on a book about El Sistema, he was expecting to write a predictably upbeat account of the country's much lauded classical-music education system. "I thought I was doing a feel-good piece of academic research," he recalled in a recent interview. But he said what he discovered over the course of a year of research and interviews surprised him. "Bit by bit, I got a picture that was very different from the one I expected. I certainly didn't go in there with the intention of writing the book that I wrote. Had I known how it would turn out, my jaw would be on...

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