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Festival de Mariachi! En La Isla kicks off at the Island University

Posted at 7:43 PM, Apr 13, 2023
and last updated 2023-04-13 20:43:24-04

CORPUS CHRISTI, Texas — Mariachi!

On Thursday, the third annual Festival de Mariachi! En La Isla kicked off. For many students, this is an opportunity to showcase their talents.

“The one I enjoyed the most is La Basurita. The girl who sings it has such a beautiful voice. I love hearing her sing it,” Irene Magallanez said.

 Magallanez is a junior at Texas A&M University-Corpus Christi and she plays guitar for the mariachi group, Mariachi de La Isla.  

“My mom is from Guanajuato in Mexico, and I knew when I told her about the mariachi group on the Island, she would tell me to go for it,” Magallanez said. 

Magallanez is one of the newest members to join. She said it’s already impacted her life and her future career. 

“If I put it on my resume that I have been playing in mariachi throughout college, I can also try and play with groups that play out in public. That will help me job wise,” Magallanez explained.

The Festival de Mariachi event inspires students like Magallanez and younger music enthusiast to reach their goals. 

Students, faculty, staff, and the public will be able to enjoy multiple days of performances by middle and high school mariachi bands from across South Texas. 

Professor of music Rai Morales tells us mariachi music has the power to unite a community. 

“The age level difference of musicians is something special that we can bring to our festival. Having the middle school students that are just starting out playing their instruments and learning the music and the culture of mariachi music,” Morales said. 

Helping with this event, Andrea Montalbo-Handid said mariachi music should be celebrated. 

“In this region that’s what we think of,” Montalbo-Hanid said. “We grew up with it, it's nostalgic and for students who come here away from home. Seeing that connection and knowing that we value it is important to them.”

For the full schedule of events that kicks off tonight, click here.