TAMIU Classical Guitar Ensemble to Present 'Guitarras de Navidad'

Texas A&M International University's Classical Guitar Ensemble, under the direction of Dr. Gilberto D. Soto, will ring in the holiday season on a melodic note during its annual 'Guitarras de Navidad' (Guitars of Christmas) concert Friday, Dec. 5 at 7:30 p.m. in the Recital Hall of the Center for the Fine and Performing Arts. (photo)

Sponsored by TAMIU, the Women's City Club and the County of Webb, the concert is free and open to the general public.

'Guitarras de Navidad' will feature music of master composers as well as traditional Christmas music. Among the selections the ensemble will perform include Handel's 'Hallelujah,' from the 'Messiah', Bach's 'Little Fugue in E minor,' and Tchaikovsky's 'Waltz of the Flowers.' In addition, the ensemble will present special Spanish arrangements of popular Christmas tunes such as 'Angels We Have Heard on High,' 'Greensleeves,' 'Jingle Bells,' and the 'Little Drummer Boy.' The ensemble will also perform a special transcription of the Mexican orchestral piece 'Huapango,' by Jose Pablo Moncayo.

The TAMIU Classical Guitar Ensemble is a group of energetic student guitarists as well as other instrumentalists who share experience in reading and performing of guitar literature for instrumental ensembles. The repertoire studied and performed by this ensemble consists of classical, flamenco, new age, and contemporary music, in addition to selected works written for instruments of the lute and guitar family, including original compositions by student composer-arrangers.

The TAMIU Classical Guitar Ensemble was established in the Fall 2001 semester. Members of the ensemble include Julio Cano, Diego García, Marc López, Cynthia Medina René Méndez, Miguel Saito, Claudia M. Valdéz, Esther Garza, Jerry Sifuentes, Rick García, Miguel Durán, Raquel Ramírez, Michael Boswell, Enrique Carrillo, Sonia Gutiérrez and Carlos Morales.

The ensemble serves as a University cultural ambassador, participating in numerous community events. Recently it won a first place division at the annual Guitar Conference sponsored by the University of Texas at Brownsville.

The ensemble also performed at the Festival Internacional Tamaulipas and at two concerts in the cities of Crestone and Canyon City in Colorado. Other events the ensemble is scheduled to perform in this year include the Feast of Sharing, TAMIU's 'Las Posadas,' and the United High School Madrigal Dinner.

For further information on the 'Guitarras de Navidad,' please contact Soto at 326-2654, e-mail gsoto@tamiu.edu or visit offices located in the Center for the Fine and Performing Arts, room 217C. University office hours are 8 a.m. - 5 p.m. Monday through Friday.

Journalists who need additional information or help with media requests and interviews should contact the Office of Public Affairs and Information Services at pais@tamiu.edu