"Music education is undergoing a major revolution -- perhaps its most important in generations, as chronicled in the new book Changing Lives."
"This passionate and inspiring story should be read by all those interested in music education, community building, and advocacy for the disadvantaged. An essential purchase."
"The inspiring story of El Sistema…Tunstall’s insightful accounts amply validate the system’s renown."
"...what makes Changing Lives... work extremely well is a combination of plentiful engaging interview material and an evocative sense of place/event as Tunstall travels from scenes of deprivation in Venezuela to gleaming international concert halls to schools in the USA now lapping up El Sistema. Tunstall has a keen eye for descriptive detail."
"Tricia Tunstall’s new book is the first to document the process that Mr Dudamel describes airily as ‘creating miracles.’"
"The lessons learned from El Sistema are more than musical. They could have far-reaching effects on how societies in the 21st century turn situations of dead ends and despair into ones of hope and promise."
"It's hard not to get caught up in Tunstall's enthusiasm and believe that, as crazy as it sounds, classical music just might save the world."
"An engaging work about a unique system of musical instruction…Tunstall demonstrates that El Sistema is not for musical aesthetes and hoarders, but for those committed to enjoying it communally!"
"A book that I think every educational and community leader in Marin should read."
"Changing Lives is the first work to pull the entire tale together in one volume."
"...she presents an impassioned case for music as a means of effecting social change..."
"Tunstall soundly probes how it is that classical music has played such a powerful role in the protection, education and elevation of so many children born into poverty. The author does a noble job tracing the history of El Sistema, while managing to keep the narrative as much in the immediate present as possible."
"It wasn’t until I read Tunstall’s thoughtful and thorough telling of the El Sistema story through her eyes as an American music educator that I felt a stirring of hope that there are lessons that can be applied to our wealthy (yet very poor) country…I urge you to read it, to share it with influential people who can make new, experimental programs happen in your community, and to reach out to the “El Sistema” network that is growing in the USA."