New National Music Program for Haiti

Haiti's National Institute of Music (NIM) is initiating a new program, the System of Orchestras and Choirs Juvenile and Infantile (SOCJI). Recently President Michel Martelly signed a contract with the Venezuelan government to begin designing and implementing SOCJI. Attending the signing were Haiti's Minister of Culture, Josette Darguste, and Venezuelan Ambassador Pedro Canino.


A comprehensive project, SOCJI will supplement basic-education skills with a cultural- arts program. The idea began after President Martelly's attendance at an international summit in Venezuela in 2011. Delegates were invited to a concert where a gathering of 600 music students from across Venezuela performed. The students are part of Venezuela's El Sistema, a program created to develop student orchestras and choirs. The program is targeted at impoverished children and teens, who receive very little formal education. Martelly saw that it was a program that could be duplicated in Haiti, a country with many of the same challenges in building an education infrastructure as Venezuela.

The SOCJI will operate in three locales in Haiti. Headquartered in Hinche, the NIM will administer the SOCJI. In Port-au-Prince, Holy Trinity Church's Father César will conduct the Holy Trinity Philharmonic Orchestra. Also in Port-au-Prince, another division will offer music education at Camp Haitian Relief, to be run by Benjamin Klause. In Jacmel, a music-education program will be offered at the School of Music Dessaix Baptiste, headed by Fritz Valesco.

A proposal for the SOCJI has been completed and will be submitted to foundations that focus their grant-giving in the areas of art and culture.

Reply to this article

Read more: Holy Trinity Cathedral, Hinche, Venezuela, Music Tips, Haiti National Institute of Music, Orchestra, Choir, Benjamin Klause, School of Music Dessaix Baptiste, Music

« The Holy Trinity Cathedral Murals and its history with Haitian Painters | Main | New Episcopal Church Cathedral in Port-au-Prince »

Return to Articles List

Leave a Reply

Name (required)

E-mail (required, will not be published)

Subject: New National Music Program for Haiti edit

» »

Our objective is to share with you news and information about Haiti and the people of Haiti. Traditions, habits and the way we were  or  grew are alive in this site. We highly recommend that you Subscribe to our Newsletter and also share with us some of the things that are memorable and made us unique people.