EDCOUCH ELSA, Texas (ValleyCentral) — Members of the Edcouch Elsa Mariachi group are Los Angeles bound for the Mariachi USA concert this summer, and they could not be more excited.
This is the first time, in its history that Mariachi USA invites a high school program to perform at the event.
Marcos Garcia, head director of mariachi at Edcouch Elsa said this is an inaugural year for the students.
“It’s the first time that [the Hollywood Bowl] wants to highlight Texas education in mariachi and so they invited our students alongside a couple of other groups in the Valley who will be participating who are students of Los Arrieros Del Valle,” Garcia said.
Garcia and Mario Ferrer, assistant director for mariachi, have been working together for 11 years at the school. The two directors play with a professional group called Los Arrieros Del Valle and have been invited to the Hollywood Bowl several times.
The two remembered the first time they performed at the Hollywood Bowl in front of 16,000 to 18,000 people on a rotating stage and look forward to their students being able to experience that same excitement.
“The first time you do that performance your adrenaline kicks in, the rush is unbelievable and the experience is amazing,” Garcia said. “So, I want the students to feel that sort of rush and excitement for the first time. Just the fact that they’ve been invited to this is amazing and we’re looking forward to sharing the stage with them.”
The students say they are most excited to travel with their friends.
Angelina Rodriguez, a senior at Edcouch Elsa High School, said her cohort has been performing together since the 6th grade. She said the Hollywood Bowl is a very selective event and the group is excited to perform alongside some of the best names in mariachi.
“Personally, I am really excited just to be in Los Angeles,” Rodriguez said. “I’ve never been there before so it’s a really great opportunity for all of us especially those of us that never really get out of Texas.”
Thomas Hernandez, a senior at Edcouch Elsa High School, said he is most looking forward to this being his last hoorah with his high school friends.
Hernandez said he is excited to play alongside his own teachers in their group Mariachi Los Arrieros and is excited to see the rest of the competition.
Jocelyn Gomez, a junior at Edcouch Elsa High School, said being part of the mariachi feels like a giant family.
“We are one giant friend group,” Gomez said. “We are very supportive of one another we help eachother when there is hardships that we’re facing. We’re basically family.”
Hector Matthew Cavazos, a senior at Edcouch Elsa High School, attributes his team’s success to their three instructors.
“We have the best three instructors you could get in the entire state of Texas, that’s really what I believe,” Cavazos said. “And also I just feel like down here in good ole Edcouch Elsa we’ve got a lot of talent.”
Local Latin Grammy-nominated artist Lucky Joe and two-time Latin Grammy winner Elida Reyna will be collaborating with the high school mariachi at the concert.