Co-Founder & Executive Director
Bassoon Teaching Artist
Sistema Fellows ’10
Born in Ottawa, Canada, bassoonist Dantes Rameau is of Haitian and Cameroonian descent. He is Co-Founder and Executive Director of the Atlanta Music Project. He was recently selected to Ebony Magazine’s 2013 Power 100, a list of the most influential African-Americans.
Dantes is a member of the inaugural class of Sistema Fellows at the New England Conservatory, graduating in 2010. As a Sistema Fellow he spent one year studying non-profit management and El Sistema, including two months in Venezuela where he taught, performed and observed. It was during the Sistema Fellows Program that he co-founded the Atlanta Music Project.
As Executive Director of AMP, Dantes has raised over one million dollars for the organization and has grown programming to 150 students, 15 teaching artists and four sites.
Dantes holds a Bachelor of Music in Bassoon Performance from McGill University in Montreal, Canada. He graduated from McGill in 2005, receiving the award for “Outstanding Performance in Bassoon.” He then earned a Master of Music in Bassoon Performance from the Yale University School of Music, studying with Frank Morelli and graduating in 2007. In 2009 he completed a Performance Certificate at Carnegie Mellon University.
Festivals he has attended include the Orford Arts Center, Banff Festival and Aspen Music Festival. He has performed at Carnegie Hall, the Kennedy Center, as well as with the Charleston Symphony, Wallingford Symphony and Aspen Chamber Symphony. His teaching credits include the El Sistema Nucleo Acarigua-Araure in Venezuela, the Yale School of Music in Schools program and the Atlanta Music Project.
A unique and compelling voice for social change through the arts, in 2010 Dantes was one of 25 artists from over 9000 applicants to be awarded $25,000 from AOL Artists’ 25For25 grant program. He was a member of LEAD Atlanta 2012, a leadership development program for Atlanta’s outstanding young professionals.
Dantes was a speaker at TEDxPeachtree 2010 where he spoke about El Sistema, the arts and social change. At TEDxPeachtree 2011 he was a performer, alongside the Atlanta Music Project Teaching Artists. At Digital Atlanta 2012, he presented on the topic of online crowdfunding. He was a speaker at the 2013 Yale School of Music Symposium on Music Education.
Dantes has lectured at the New England Conservatory, Mercer University and the University of Manitoba. In addition, he has consulted for dozens of El Sistema-inspired programs in Canada and the United States. In his spare time he enjoys soccer, basketball, salsa, TED and travel.
Co-Founder & Director of AMPlify
Sistema Fellows ’12
Aisha Bowden is the Co-Founder and Director of AMPlify, the Choral Program of the Atlanta Music Project. In this role, she overseas all AMPlify operations and directs the AMPlify Choir. In addition she holds strategic and administrative responsibilities for the AMP.
Aisha completed the Sistema Fellows program in 2012, a prestigious, post-graduate fellowship of New England Conservatory that trains gifted musicians and educators to lead El Sistema-inspired programs in the United States.
Prior to the fellowship, Aisha enjoyed a career as an award-winning public school music educator for eleven years. As Chair of the Music Department at Thomson Elementary School in Washington, DC , Ms. Bowden provided General and Vocal Music Instruction to the full student body, directed the Thomson Choir and managed several partnerships with leading arts organizations, to include the Washington National Opera and The Choral Arts Society of Washington, DC.
Her performance background, which includes travel to Switzerland, Germany and Gabon, Africa, inspired Ms. Bowden to organize frequent performance opportunities for her students, designed to broaden their exposure to and understanding of the world around them. Under her direction, the Thomson Choir performed for the King and Queen of Norway, Delegate Eleanor Holmes Norton and the Bicentennial Celebration of Abraham Lincoln at which President Obama was the keynote speaker. The Thomson choir has appeared on CNN, C-SPAN and Good Morning America as well as local television networks. During her tenure in the DC Public School system, Ms. Bowden also served as accompanist for the All-City Honors Chorus and a General Music Curriculum Writer for the DCPS Division of Music. Additionally, Ms. Bowden has been recognized for excellence in arts education by the Arts for Every Student Program, Who’s Who in American Educators and the Mayors Arts Awards. She is also featured in the April 2012 issue of Teaching Music, a publication of the National Association for Music Education.
After relocating from Washington,DC to Georgia in 2009, Ms. Bowden conducted middle school choirs with Cobb County Public Schools and worked as a Choral Teaching Artist for the pilot year of the Atlanta Music Project (AMP). That experience with AMP influenced her decision to enroll in the 2011-2012 Sistema Fellows Program and subsequently create the first Sistema-inspired choral program in Georgia. Aisha brings expertise in choral directing, public school education, community programming and non-profit management.