National University

Alumni Recognized at Mariachi Event

 The Spectrum Academic Center was filled with Mexican melodies on Wednesday evening, March 12 as a troupe of young Mariachi musicians showcased the genre’s many styles in celebration of Mariachi Week in San Diego.

The talented guests were members of a non-profit organization focusing on the importance of music education while providing a positive outlet for today’s youth. Mariachi Juvenil was founded by alumnus Serafin Paredes in 2001, and is the first organization of its kind in the San Diego Area.

Don Paredes and his wife, Wendy Charines, are both graduates of National University, extremely talented musicians and dedicated music teachers. National University Interim President Patricia Potter welcomed and honored them with certificates of recognition saluting their cultural contributions. Accompanied by student musicians, the pair of distinguished alumni also lectured an audience of approximately 40 attendees on the history of mariachi music. The catered event was free and open to the public.

With assistance from alumnus Roberto Corral and Volare Engineering, National University provided local mariachi students with tickets to a matinee performance of Cruzar la Cara de la Luna, a production of the San Diego Opera which was billed as “the first mariachi opera.”

The bilingual performance on Saturday, March 15 combined the talents of composer José “Pepe” Martinez, music director of the storied Mariachi Vargas de Tecalitlán, with eminent Broadway stage director and writer Leonard Foglia.

To view photos of the mariachi event, click here.