Unfortunately, this newspaper was unable to provide full information about the annual Traditional Mariachi Festival, scheduled August 13-19, in last week’s edition due to the lack of a program.
Incredibly, the Jalisco Culture Secretariat, organizers of this event that always precedes the main International Mariachi Festival (August 22-September 1; schedule in last week’s edition), only managed to release the program on Friday, August 10, a mere three days before the festival’s scheduled start.
For many music lovers, traditional mariachi has more appeal than the in-your-face variety, with its mix of brass and strings, charro outfits and big, bold sound that has come to represent Mexico, and Jalisco in particular, throughout the world. In traditional mariachi, musicians represent a style closer to son music, the form that gave birth to mariachi in the 19th century. They often wear much less ostentatious loose-fitting white peasant shirts, usually with black or white pants and huarache sandals. The big difference, though, is that they do not employ brass instruments, sticking with guitars and violins, guitars and harps, or some other mix of string instruments.
Fortunately, many Traditional Mariachi Festival events run over to this weekend. Here are the main ones you can still enjoy:
Plaza Fundadores (behind Degollado Theater). 2nd Muestra de Mariachis. Friday, August 17, 4 p.m. Open to public free of charge.
Metropolitan Cathedral. Velada de minuetes. Friday, August 17, 7 p.m. Free.
Teatro Degollado. “Ojos de papel volando,” a song and dance presentation paying homage to the “Son de la negra,” one of Jalisco’s most loved folk songs. Friday, August 17, 8 p.m. Tickets at Ticketmaster and at theater box office.
Plaza de las Americas (Zapopan centro, facing Basilica), Fandango Mariachero. Friday, August 17, 8 p.m. Open to public free of charge
Plaza Fundadores (behind Degollado Theater). 3rd Muestra de Mariachis. Saturday, August 18, 4 p.m. El Zorro del Sur, a dance and music spectacle, 6 p.m. Fandango Mariachero, 8 p.m. Open to public free of charge.
Teatro Degollado. Gala concerts with recognized performers of the traditional mariachi genre. Saturday, August 18, and Sunday, August 19, 10 a.m. Free entry with courtesy ticket, call (33) 3030-4500 , ext. 50058 for details.