Venezuelan musicians set out to establish a Guinness World Record in the World’s Largest Orchestra category.
To achieve their goal, 12,000 children and teenagers had to perform a symphonic composition from the universal repertoire, for more than five minutes simultaneously. The performance took place at a military academy in Venezuela.
The project, which brought together young musicians from all over the country, was initiated by ‘El Sistema’, the System of Children and Youth Orchestras of Venezuela, a state programme founded by José Antonio Abreu (1939-2018), a Venezuelan orchestra conductor, pianist, economist, educator, activist, and politician, in 1975.
Over the years, the public programme has given thousands of underprivileged children access to music and education, including Diego Luzardo, 17, who was one of the principal conductors during the competition performance.
“'Of course it is a great responsibility, and my message for the Venezuelan youth is to not give up. If you have a dream, put your heart into it, and that dream will come true because dreams come true, but you have to persevere and fight to achieve them,” said Diego.
One of the programme's most famous alumni is Gustavo Dudamel, the musical director of the Paris Opera and the Los Angeles Philharmonic.
During the performance, 300 independent observers ensured that all of the conditions for setting the world record were met, but the final verdict will be announced by the Guinness World Records organisation in several days.
The previous World Record for the Largest Orchestra was set in 2019, by a Russian ensemble of 8,097 musicians.