In the face of the pandemic, we’ve been compelled to reimagine our future. Today, I am choosing to harness the power of music as a testament to resilience, a tool for healing as we unite for the betterment of our community,” expressed Horacio Blanco, the singer-songwriter of Desorden Público and the innovative Sinfonía Desordenada project.
Venezuela’s orchestral scene has been a beacon of hope, famously known for its role in rescuing impoverished youth from the clutches of drugs and crime. However, with the socio-economic implosion of the country, Venezuelan orchestral musicians are finding it increasingly difficult to sustain themselves solely through their craft. The pandemic has further intensified their precarious situation, necessitating additional sources of income.
A shining example of resilience in these challenging times is the Venezuelan orchestra, Sinfonía Gran Mariscal de Ayacucho. This summer, under the baton of Elisa Vegas – the sole female conductor of a professional symphony orchestra in Venezuela – and in collaboration with Grammy-nominated singer Horacio Blanco, they embarked on the unique Sinfonía Desordenada project.
Defying the odds, the accomplished full orchestra joined forces with a band of unconventional rockers to record homemade symphonic arrangements of some classic pieces from the repertoire of the Venezuelan ska band Desorden Público. The recording process was quite unusual – they used their mobile phones.
Recording from home presented its own set of challenges. Each musician had to identify the room with the best acoustics, position their phone optimally, press “Rec”, and perform flawlessly on their instrument.
This monumental endeavor, conceived amidst the harshest lockdowns, came to fruition in November 2021. The strings, woodwinds, brass, and percussion of the Ayacucho Symphony Orchestra, alongside Horacio Blanco, performed in a free open-air concert in Caracas. This marked the inaugural performance of the Sinfonía Desordenada project. Its significance lies in the music and the values it promotes – solidarity, harmony, and empathy.
Published in National Geographic, selected by Nat Geo as one of the 2021 projects that show the resilience of the human spirit.
It was the winner of the Global Peace Photo Award 2022
It was exhibited in the Leica Gallery in Madrid and the GBG Gallery in Caracas.
The video of the exhibition opening in Caracas was made by Manuel Oropeza.