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concert performers
Top: Singer Vikki Carr and harpist Julio Martinez
Bottom: Mariachi Femenil Las Erendiras de San Antonio
and Eugene Dowdy, UTSA Orchestra conductor

Concert raises $20K for UTSA mariachi program

By Lesli Hicks
Special Projects Writer, M.A., '07

(Sept. 25, 2007)--UTSA's mariachi students and three-time Grammy winner Vikki Carr raised more than $20,000 Thursday night in an historic concert and cultural event. Proceeds from the concert will support scholarships for UTSA mariachi students.

A capacity crowd Sept. 20 at the Guadalupe Cultural Arts Center cheered student musicians in the two-hour UTSA President's Mariachi Scholarship Concert featuring harpist Julio Martinez of Mariachi Vargas fame and Carr, an El Paso native who accepted the first Galardon por Expresiones de Arte Cultural Latino Award from UTSA President Ricardo Romo.

Also appearing was the Mariachi Femenil Las Eréndiras, San Antonio's first all-female mariachi group, founded in 1996.

The UTSA Orchestra, UTSA Mariachi Los Paisanos and Guadalupe Cultural Arts Center Mariachi also performed.

Audience members thunderously applauded all performers throughout the night under the deft pacing of Jose Torres, a former UTSA student turned instructor, and Eugene Dowdy, chair and associate professor in the Department of Music, who conducted the UTSA Orchestra in a sweeping rendition of Moncayo's "Huapango."

Planning committee members for the President's Mariachi Scholarship Concert are Jude Valdez, UTSA vice president for community services; Eugene Dowdy, associate professor and chair, Department of Music; Martha Fasci, College of Business associate dean and associate professor of accounting; Gina Mendez, director of community relations, UTSA Downtown Campus; Arturo Almeida, UTSA art collection curator; Cynthia Rios-Solis, events manager, Department of Music; and Martin Rodriquez, information technology associate, College of Architecture.

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