The 26th Annual Mariachi Vargas Extravaganza is the largest and longest-running mariachi music festival in the United States. Each year, more than 1,000 student mariachi musicians and vocalists convene in San Antonio from throughout the U.S. to participate in musical workshops, national competitions and grand performances. The event culminates with a concert featuring competition winners and Mariachi Vargas de Tecalitlán. Due to the current COVID-19 pandemic, the Mariachi Vargas Extravaganza will go virtual this year with dozens of online educational initiatives and a fiercely competitive online vocal competition.
Continuing with the desire to keep youth engaged through these challenging times, we hosted a national search that attracted top vocal talent from elementary to college age. Vocalists from throughout the nation responded, and 35 talented students from across the U.S. were selected to compete as finalists. Judges are members of the world’s preeminent Mariachi Vargas de Tecalitlán, who will select winners based on vocal technique, showmanship and overall performance excellence in the first online competition in this festival’s 26-year history. Only one student will be named Grand Champion Vocalist of the Year and will be awarded the prestigious Gonzaba Medical Group Scholarship and represent the Mariachi Vargas Extravaganza in 2021.
With over 50,000 students involved in school-based mariachi music programs nationwide, much-needed online educational materials will be rolled out in a virtual setting to include tutorials, audio and video podcasts and live discussions with members of the mariachi community. Expect to see vocal and instrumental tutorials for the harp, violin, guitar and trumpet released starting December 1 through the end of 2020. Student mariachi musicians and Mariachi Vargas fans will also be able to watch and listen to insightful interviews and discussions with members of Mariachi Vargas and key influencers in the mariachi community.
HERE IS THE CURRENT SCHEDULE:
Mon., Nov. 30 @ 2 pm – Plans are announced for the 26th Annual Mariachi Vargas Extravaganza
Tues., Dec. 1 @ 9 am – Learn how to play the harp with Mariachi Vargas’ Víctor Álvarez – Part 1
Tues., Dec. 1 @ 2 pm – Explore ways to engage mariachi students during the pandemic
Tues., Dec. 1 @ 4 pm – Mariachi Vargas’ harp player Víctor Álvarez chats with Leon Camacho
Tues., Dec. 1 @ 6 pm – Listen to Jonathan Clark interview Víctor Álvarez about his personal musical journey
Wed., Dec. 2 @ 9 am – Learn more about the harp with Mariachi Vargas’ Víctor Álvarez – Part 2
Wed., Dec. 2 @ 2 pm – View a live tribute on legendary trumpeter Miguel Martínez hosted by Jonathan Clark with invited guests John Vela, José Hernández, and Álvaro Paulino.
Wed., Dec. 2 @ 6 pm – Arturo Vargas shares his personal mariachi journey with Jonathan Clark
Thurs., Dec. 3 @ 9 am – Watch Part 3 of harp tutorial series with Mariachi Vargas’ Víctor Álvarez
Thurs., Dec. 3 @ 2 pm – Learn about mariachi-related career opportunities in the fine arts
Thurs., Dec. 3 @ 4 pm – Robert López shares his stories as the first Mexican American to join Mariachi Vargas
Thurs., Dec. 3 @ 6 pm – Vargas trumpeter Agustín Sandoval shares his personal musical saga
Fri., Dec. 4 @ 9 am – Watch Part 4 of harp tutorial series with Mariachi Vargas’ Víctor Álvarez
Fri., Dec. 4 @ 2 pm – Hear from experts on how to write, record and copyright original mariachi music
Fri., Dec. 4 @ 4 pm – Preview Agustín Sandoval’s new mariachi trumpet book
Fri., Dec. 4 @ 6 pm Listen to Jonathan Palomar share his story on how he got to Mariachi Vargas
Sat., Dec. 5 @ 7 pm Watch the 26th Annual Mariachi Vargas Extravaganza National Vocal Competition
Click the blue highlighted words in each of the events and it will take you to the social media platform for that particular session. They can be found on the Mariachi Vargas Extravaganza Facebook page, the MariachiMusicDotCom YouTube Channel or the Mariachi Vargas Extravaganza Spotify station. The national vocal competition streams on YouTube Saturday, December 5 at 7 pm.
The Mariachi Vargas Extravaganza is made possible with support from Gonzaba Medical Group and H-E-B – longtime sponsors of this annual music festival. Thanks to our sponsors, the 26th Annual Mariachi Vargas Extravaganza virtual event can be streamed for free. Please note, there will not be a concert at the Lila Cockrell Theatre this year as Mariachi Vargas’ drive-in concert in San Antonio on Oct. 16 took place in lieu of the indoor concert due to Covid.
The Mariachi Vargas Extravaganza is produced by Muñoz Public Relations (MPR), whose mission is to promote performance excellence, cultural preservation and higher education among Latino youth. Call 210-860-9633 or 210-225-3353 for more information.
Stay safe and we look forward to connecting with you throughout the week!