CIRILO BURGOS Cirilo is unstoppable in sharing and teaching his passion for music When Cirilo Burgos Martinez (22) of Paraguay plays a musical instrument or stands in front of an orchestra as conductor, he is not only living his own dream, but helping other young people and children realise theirs. Cirilo Burgos Martinez. Photo: SOS Children´s Villages Music became an integral part of Cirilo’s life when he learned to play the flute after joining his SOS Children’s Village family in Luque, Paraguay as a 9-year-old boy. At the age of 13 he was already playing in a youth symphony orchestra. He realised he was fortunate to get a music education and wanted to share his gift with others. “When I was 14 I started to teach music in the SOS Children’s Village. I remember that some of my students were bigger than me,” said Cirilo. Even Jose Ramirez, Village Director of SOS Children’s Village Luque, is a student of Cirilo’s and plays the saxophone in the village band. Cirilo’s passion was unstoppable. Soon he was traveling 50 km a week to another city to reach more children. And today he spends a total of 24 hours in a bus to travel to San Juan three times per week to teach music in a school for underprivileged children. “I see children that want to study or play an instrument, but they can’t because they have no money or they don’t have a teacher or the school is extremely far. I want to help them,” said Cirilo about his motivation to go to such extremes to share his passion for music. “. I am convinced that through music they acquire values for life that help them achieve their dreams” he continues. Cirilo conducting an orchestra. Photo: SOS Children´s Villages While continuing to teach and play music, Cirilo managed to graduate from high school, specialising in industrial electronics. At the age of 19 he earned the title of senior lecturer in music theory from the art school and music conservatory in Luque. Cirilo’s work did not go unnoticed. He recently won a competition to conduct the symphony orchestra of the National University of Ascunción. He was the youngest conductor in the competition. Currently he is studying for his degree in music at the same university. “Nothing is impossible. We all have a dream, and if we want to make it true, we only have to work each and every day,” Cirilo said. “Cirilo really inspires others. He has an entrepreneurial character, is a leader in all areas in which he participates, has great talent and ability, but always shows a lot of humility and a high degree of comradeship that touches the heart of the people he deals with.” – Jose Ramirez, Village Director of SOS Children’s Village Luque.