A YouTube dream: Cuban music performance wins NBYO 1 million views
Saturday, August 12, 2017
A YouTube dream: Cuban music performance wins NBYO 1 million views
The New Brunswick Youth Orchestra had their YouTube video viewed more than one million times. (New Brunswick Youth Orchestra Facebook)

The video now has 1,020,233 views, and was reviewed by a major U.S. website, Jazz on the Tube

Nathalie Sturgeon · CBC News · August 12

When a video of the New Brunswick Youth Orchestra performing the Cuban "Mambo Potpourri" reached 800,000 views on Youtube, the performers decided to up the stakes.

And sure enough, after calling on their audience to view the video, they hit the jackpot.

The video now has 1,020,233 views.

"We shared a couple of clips on the video screen of the mambo piece, and we said to this large crowd 'go home, login, view the video and help us get over that one million mark,'" said Ken MacLeod, CEO of the orchestra.

Latin influence

But the video didn't just pique the interest of orchestra fans.

Noticing the high number of views on Youtube, a major U.S. website, Jazz on the Tube, decided to review the performance.

MacLeod said the website holds the biggest online collection of jazz videos on earth.

In its review, it described New Brunswick as a province in Canada, "mostly rural."

The website also posed the question of how many Latin American people live in this part of the country.

"And then basically asked the question 'how is it possible, in this small province, that we could have an orchestra like this and a performance like this?'" he said.

The website ended up crediting Antonio Delgado, the orchestra's music director and conductor, for inspiration, said MacLeod.

Delgado used to conduct a world renowned orchestra, the Sistema Nacional de Orquestas Juveniles e Infantiles de Venezuela (National System of Youth and Children's Orchestras of Venezuela).

'They said it would be like the Estonian basketball team winning the NBA.- Ken MacLeod, CEO of the New Brunswick Youth Orchestra

It also mentioned the New Brunswick performers' win in Vienna at a youth orchestra competition as a factor in their great performance.

"It's an amazing accomplishment – and you're watching the group that did it – and they did it with Cuban music," the review concluded.

"They were right about that," said MacLeod. "They said it would be like the Estonian basketball team winning the NBA."

What's next?

MacLeod said the support for the orchestra has been extraordinary.

As for another video, he only said the orchestra has already recorded and is set to perform a new piece as part of their Canada 150 tour through the province.

"Well, look, maybe it will be the Howard Shore piece," he said.