Mariachi Oro Advances to State

Isabel Ramos-Assam, Editor

After weeks and countless hours of preparation prior to the UIL Regional competition, the Mariachi Oro has become state bound on January 28, 2023, and is heading to the UIL State Competition. As a second-year mariachi group, its members have qualified for state for the second time.

“We have been building the group since the start of the school year because all but three people from last year’s group graduated,” Mariachi Oro Teacher, Mrs. Way, said. “This year, everyone in the group has the goal to perform to the best of their abilities and to try and repeat the great scores that they received to advance to state.”

The Mariachi Oro aims to promote Mexican culture and shed light on Mexican traditions. Many members of the group are of Mexican heritage and enjoy highlighting this music genre. Furthermore, through competitive events, the Mariachi Oro culturally educates participants and their community at a regional and state level.

“Mariachi is the encapsulation of Mexican culture,” Mariachi Oro Member, Sam Gutierrez, said. “The art, the singing, and the stories that are told in Mariachi songs are just beautiful.”

The journey towards achieving a Superior Rating at the UIL Regional Competition has not been easy. The mariachi members have put in countless hours of work and sacrifice to perfect their performance and give this Mexican genre the recognition it deserves.

“The students practiced every morning from 7:15 to 8:30 on school days leading up to our competition on the 28th of January,” Way said. “It has been a huge commitment.”

The Mariachi Oro’s work and practice is not over yet. The group is aiming for high scores at the state level, which will have a more competitive atmosphere. The state level competition will consist of groups from eastern school districts of Texas.

“There will be a lot of groups from east Texas and down in the valley of Texas where mariachi has been a class tradition for the last 30 to 40 years,” Way said. “The students are going to see top notch groups that perform with so much showmanship.”

The group hopes to enhance their performance to increase their chances of a high score, especially among other talented ensembles.

“The eastside schools have more funding and are much larger,” Gutierrez said. “A lot of the mariachi groups that come from central Texas are part of fine arts schools specifically, which makes us the underdog, but we are still maximizing our opportunities and will put forth our best effort at state.”

The UIL State Competition is set to take place from the 23rd to the 26th of February in Seguin, Texas.