He and dozens of other students in the mariachi band at Ector are readying for their showcase performance during Fiesta West Texas's
"It feels awesome to be on stage. To be up there. You don't really know what to expect, then the crowd gets into it and it's amazing," Quintana said.
In a recent rehearsal, Quintana, and the rest of mariachi teacher
They tried "La Bikina" and "Serenata Huasteca." Each teenager was dressed in the traditional mariachi garb: a three-piece black suit or dress, a loose bright blue tie, short boots (or Converses). There weren't any wide-brimmed sombreros today.
This year the
Madrid has been teaching mariachi in the
The music is much the same, and the kids, well the kids are why Madrid stays in school.
"I love this age group. When they're developing their skills and begin to mature at this age," Madrid said.
If you don't catch them at the
"There are a lot professional musicians who may never experience that in their lifetime," Madrid said about playing to large audiences. "It gives them lots of confidence. They are prepared to sound good and look good," Madrid said.
The myth that follows the word "mariachi" is that it has native roots that possibly are derived from the wood used to make the platform where performers danced to music of village musicians, according to mariachi.org.
Ensembles are often six to eight, but for the students at
As students stood side-by-side ready to perform last week, Madrid exercised a note of confidence in the group. Even though it produced a few groans.
"No warm-ups! It's gonna sound great," Madrid said.
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