Since 2007 NEOJIBA (State Youth and Children's Orchestra Centers of Bahia) represents an opportunity for change in the lives of children and young people who through collective music making and the demanding practice acquire essential tools for the full development of their capabilities. The outcome is confirmed by the success achieved by NEOJIBA orchestras and its enormous social impact.

NEOJIBA, a priority program for the State of Bahia and a pioneer in Brazil, is managed by the Institute of Social Action for Music (IASPM), maintained by the Culture Secretariat of the State and supported by the Castro Alves Theatre. It was inspired by “El Sistema”, the well-known Venezuelan program created in 1975. The founder and director of NEOJIBA is the international pianist Ricardo Castro, born in Bahia and established in Europe since 1984.

The Centers and the Orchestras

NEOJIBA includes a Center for Management and Professional Development, which operates at the Castro Alves Theatre in Salvador, where the main orchestras with members aged 7 to 29 rehearse daily. In addition, there are five Orchestral Practice Centers in Salvador and its metropolitan area and in Trancoso, the extreme South of the State of Bahia. The program also supports several orchestral projects inspired by the idea of NEOJIBA in Bahia’s countryside.

The incipient choir activities include one youth choir that was created in May 2010 and a Symphonic Choir which made its first appearance in 2012 for NEOJIBA’s 5th anniversary festivities in a performance of Beethoven’s 9th Symphony.

NEOJIBA provides to its musicians - at no cost and without any social distinction - musical instruments, learning materials, fully monitored music practice and classes of musical theory. This all is being delivered by highly qualified professionals. In addition to that they receive transportation support and snacks. The members of the Center for Management and Professional Development also receive a monthly subsidy.

In March 2014 NEOJIBA is going to move from the Culture Sector to the Social Development Sector and is planning a great expansion with the aim to have by the end of the year 4,000 members throughout the state of Bahia.

In order to continue offering a life changing opportunity to even more children NEOJIBA is always in need of funds, equipment and instruments, new or used. For more information on how to support the project, please visit our website.