Another Mother’s Day celebration has come and gone, and we’d like to take a moment to recap our grand experience in presenting La Voz de Mariachi – Steeven Sandoval – as a solo artist, during the Serenata de Las Madres concert held recently in San Antonio at the Charline McCombs Empire Theater.
For over a decade, our MPR team has had the pleasure of working with Steeven while he was a member of El Mejor Mariachi del Mundo. His personality quickly made him a fan favorite.
“He [Sandoval] is stunning in every way you can imagine. From his incredible voice to his stage presence, to his personality,” Cynthia Muñoz, producer of Serenata de Las Madres and Mariachi Vargas Extravaganza said. “Everyone talks about how humble, poised, gracious and classy he is. He has a way of touching audiences like few [artists] can do. I thought this concert couldn’t possibly be better than last years and it was.”
Muñoz shared that the concert is unique in bringing the Mexican culture from Mexico and combining it with the Mexican-American culture from the U.S. She is a major advocate of promoting and presenting talent from both countries.
“Very seldom do you see a Mexican artist from Mexico share the stage with U.S. based and local Mexican-American talent,” Muñoz explained. “Most artists from Mexico have their own [mariachi] that accompanies them on concerts. For us, it’s always been about bringing both cultures together and creating a high-quality production that can be enjoyed by all.”
The San Antonio-based ensemble Mariachi Azteca de América was the powerhouse of the show and did a phenomenal job playing the vast repertoire of over 30 songs Sandoval requested. The guys looked sharp in brand new trajes that made it in just in time for the show. These details contribute to the end result: an elegant appearance and a class-act performance.
Sandoval once again enthralled audiences where he performed for nearly 800 people for more than two hours, and still kept them wanting more.
“Almost 2.5 hours and yet we still walked away saying we wanted to hear more,” says concert goer Lee Rodríguez. “The only thing we didn’t like is that there was an intermission. Once Steeven started, we didn’t want to him to stop and we couldn’t wait for the intermission to be over. My wife and I even stayed after the concert finished because we were so astounded by the phenomenal talent throughout the evening. My wife even had a chance to speak to Kassandra Juárez after the show and this just seemed to put the icing on the cake to a fabulous evening.”
Before the music began, KENS 5 Great Day SA host Roma Villavicenco, Master of Ceremonies, gave audience members a chance to address the crowd and laud the special lady in their life. Villaviciencio contributed that added touch of elegance and class that is a standard to MPR Productions. “Roma fit right in as the perfect MC. She loves the music and the culture and is genuinely ingrained in the community,” Muñoz added.
The concert kicked off with a stunning visual of girl power and beauty as — for the first time ever— former Mariachi Vargas Extravaganza Vocal Champions Kamryn Ramírez, Alexa Posas and Kassandra Juárez joined on stage, accompanied by all-female ensemble Mariachi Flor de Jalisco. The girls mesmerized crowds with their music, voices and vibrant outfits.
Steeven stole the show and engaged the crowd, addressing mothers and having the audience sing along to classics. He sang most hits from his album 100 Litros de Tequila, and mariachi classics in a set that lasted more than two hours.
Concertgoers praised Sandoval’s performance, most commenting on his passion and presence on stage.
As a final farewell, concertgoers received a parting rose from mariachi members of Highlands Mariachi Tecolote, compliments of H-E-B.
“I knew he [Steeven] was a talented artist, but to see him in person is incredible. He’s an amazing performer with a gracious and humble stage presence. I’ve listened to his music on Spotify but then when I saw him in person at the Empire, it was a whole new surprising and breathtaking experience,” concertgoer Cynthia Leal said. “Steeven performs on a whole new level and gives the audiences something they’ve never seen before – a solo artist who performs with his entire body using every ounce of energy to communicate what he’s singing about.”
We appreciate the the participation of concertgoers, corporate sponsors WellMed, UnitedHealthCare and H-E-B, members of Mariachi Flor de Jalisco and Azteca de América and Steeven Sandoval for helping create an unforgettable evening.
Muñoz concluded by encouraging other mariachi promoters across the U.S. to incorporate Sandoval into their productions. “You’ll be giving your audiences a gift they’ll remember for a lifetime!”
“He is a joy to work with and an incredible talent. We [the mariachi community] need to come together to promote him. I’d love to see him performing across the U.S.”
Next on the calendar for the MPR team is the Mariachi Vargas Extravaganza Summer Camp scheduled for June 18 – 22, 2018 at the Tobin Center for the Performing Arts Carlos Alvarez Theater. Also, mark your calendar for the 24th Annual Mariachi Vargas Extravaganza set for November 11 – 18.