Guitar Ensemble Concert Features Mariachi de Humboldt

The Cal Poly Humboldt Guitar Ensemble and friends will play Friday, April 15 at 8 p.m. in Fulkerson Recital Hall. The concert includes a variety of musical styles and ensembles, including a guitar octet playing an arrangement of Monteverdi's “Orfeo,” a banjo trio performing old-time clawhammer banjo, performance poetry with guitar and marimba, and the much-anticipated return of the school’s newest ensemble, Mariachi de Humboldt.

Mariachi de Humboldt
Mariachi de Humboldt

The “Orfeo Suite,” arranged for five guitars by Swiss composer and guitarist Jürg Kindle, is a recent setting of one of the first operas ever written, "Orfeo," by Italian Renaissance composer Claudio Monteverdi. Another work for classical guitar on the program is “Air” by Baroque composer George Frederick Handel. “Rain Song” is a beautiful 21st-century composition for solo guitar by the award-winning composer Marc Anthony Cruz, who is also a professor of guitar at Texas State University, San Marcos. “Fiesta” is a Latin funk composition by Spanish singer-songwriter and producer Juan Carlos Calderón.

New to this concert is The Botany Banjo Boys, two Cal Poly Humboldt students who have been studying clawhammer banjo while majoring in botany. Charlie Deible and Grayson Prater will be joined on the banjo by faculty guitar teacher Jennifer Trowbridge, playing old-time music like “Old Joe Clark,” “Stony Point,” and “Peach Bottom Creek.” And performing on nylon-string guitars, jazz guitar duo Nick De Anda and Chris Antolin-Wilczek share their version of Stevie Wonder's hit "Isn't She Lovely."

“Love songs, love songs, and more love songs!” is how Cal Poly Humboldt music instructor Jennifer Trowbridge describes the repertoire for this semester’s Mariachi de Humboldt, which she co-directs with Norberto Angón. “The ensemble has grown to 18 members, and we have four singers in addition to the standard ensemble including guitarrón (a Mexican six-stringed bass guitar), vihuelas (five-stringed Renaissance-era guitars tuned like lutes), guitarras, trompetas, violines, and a saxofón alto. The performers include music majors as well as students majoring in Kinesiology, Wildlife, Psychology, Computer Science, and Environmental Resources. Performing traditional Mexican music is a source of pride for the ensemble members, many of whom have roots in Mexico.”

The repertoire for Mariachi de Humboldt includes the traditional “Arboles de la Barranca,” Fernando Z. Maldonado’s “Hermoso Cariño,” the Latin Grammy Hall of Fame award winning “El Rey” by José Alfredo Jiménez, pianist and composer Consuelo Velázquez’s well-known standard “Besame Mucho,” and “Se Va Muriendo Mi Alma” by Mexican singer, composer, and producer Marco Antonio Solís. 

To purchase tickets: From the "All Events" drop-down menu select "School of Dance, Music, and Theatre" and select your event. Proof of COVID vaccination and booster is still required for all guests on campus. At press time, the wearing of facemasks is not mandatory, but it is strongly encouraged. If attending the concert in person is not an option, a free Livestream can be viewed at https://youtu.be/2V7Dg8h83t8.

For more information, contact Cal Poly Humboldt School of Dance, Music, and Theatre, 707-826-3566, mus@humboldt.edu.