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A Celebration of Mexican Culture back button

Ballet Folklórico and Marimba Band students from the Santa Maria Joint Union High School District and a local college are joining cultural forces to bring traditional Mexican music and dance to the community on Friday (Nov. 13) and Saturday (Nov.14).

The “Celebration of Mexican Culture” 2015 performance begins at 7 p.m. both nights inside the historic Ethel Pope Auditorium at Santa Maria High School. Nearly 1,000 people attended the community event last year.

More than 100 entertainers from Righetti, Santa Maria and Pioneer Valley high schools are participating in colorful and authentic costumes. Allan Hancock College is part of the team too.

The performers will celebrate traditional folk and contemporary dance selections from the Mexican states of Tamaulipas Norte, Chihuahua, Nuevo León, Baja California Norte, Yucatán, Veracruz, Chiapas, Hidalgo, Sinaloa and Jalisco. Música Tradicional, Pop Latino, and Cumbia are the musical styles.

Righetti’s Folklórico will present dances from the northern state of Baja California including “Boda de Cuitlacoche”, which depicts a ranch wedding celebration, according to ERHS Director Ricardo Gabaldon.

Dancers Yesenia Beas and Isabella Brown believe the “collaboration” offers everyone a different experience.

“Seeing the smiles from the audience brings us inspiration, but mainly motivation to keep dancing and smiling too,’’ said Beas, a Righetti senior. “My favorite part of the show is when all the schools get together to perform the last song “El Jarabe Tapatio” from the state of Jalisco, which has become a quintessential symbol, with the mariachi costumes for men and the vivid colored dresses for women.’’

For Dancer Jasmine Rodriguez, the traditional songs and dances have deep family roots.

“It is an absolute honor to be part of this show being that it is a family tradition brought down from my grandmother,’’ said Rodriguez, a senior. “It has been a dream to be able to perform following my family’s footsteps and show what my Mexican culture is all about.’’

Tickets can be purchased at ERHS, SMHS or PVHS. Tickets are $10 in advance, but will cost you $12 at the door.

NONDISCRIMINATION POLICY: The Santa Maria Joint Union High School District is committed to ensuring equal, fair, and meaningful access to employment and education services. The SMJUHSD does not discriminate in any employment practice, education program, or educational activity on the basis and/or association with a person or group with one or more of these actual or perceived characteristics of age, ancestry, color, disability, ethnicity, ethnic group identifications, gender, gender identity, gender expression, genetic information, marital, family or parental status, medical condition, military or veteran status, nationality, national origin, immigration status, political affiliation, pregnancy and related conditions, race, religion, retaliation, sex (including sexual harassment), sexual orientation, or any other basis prohibited by California state and federal nondiscrimination laws respectively. Not all bases of discrimination will apply to both education services and employment. If you believe you have been subjected to discrimination, harassment, intimidation, or bullying, immediately contact the District’s Discrimination, Equity and Title IX Compliance Officer Mr. Kevin R. Platt at 2560 Skyway Drive, Santa Maria, CA 93455, (805) 922-4573 or You may request a copy of SMJUHSD’s Uniform Complaint Procedures, Non-Discrimination Policies, Sexual Harassment Policies or click here.