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Soundtrack, DVD of Laredo’s ‘Rhapsody on the Rio’ Now Available in Benefit Sale Posted: 6/08/17

Soundtrack, DVD of Laredo’s ‘Rhapsody on the Rio’ Now Available in Benefit Sale


Poster, Rhapsody on the Rio
The new documentary tells a powerful story of Laredo against a haunting musical composition..  

A chance to own a DVD of the powerful new Laredo documentary, “Rhapsody on the Rio,” or enjoy its CD soundtrack, is now available.  Both are available for sale from Texas A&M International University (TAMIU). 

Sales support student scholarships in the Fine and Performing Arts. CDs are $25; DVDs are $35 and a combination of both is $50.  Online purchase is possible at this link,  or in person at the University’s Office for Institutional Advancement, located in the Sue and Radcliffe Killam Library, suite 262. 

The film debuted April 19 at a gala public showing at TAMIU’s Center for the Fine and Performing Arts’ Theatre and aired repeatedly thereafter on KLRN, the San Antonio PBS station for Central and South Texas. KLRN produced the film with generous funding support from the City of Laredo.

“Rhapsody on the Rio Grande,” is  based on a haunting musical composition, “Rapsodia,” by TAMIU faculty member and University organist Dr. Colin Campbell. It explores the river’s immutable ability to bring together diverse peoples and, using music, explores theme streams of culture, history and identity.

At the film’s debut, Dr. Pablo Arenaz, TAMIU president, said he believed the documentary film told a powerful story.

“It’s a remarkable, artistic offering infused with what it means to be a citizen of our dynamic border.  It masterfully draws from a universal palette of sound and image to share its story.  I think audiences will be especially delighted to see familiar Laredo faces and hear traditional sounds that embrace that story,” Dr. Arenaz said.

Laredo Mayor Pete Saenz said the documentary opens the door to the wonder that is Laredo.

“We are proud to collaborate on such a worthy endeavor.  This film-making work of art showcases Laredo’s bountiful culture manifested through its rich history and gifted people,” said Mayor Saenz, “This documentary captures “nuestro Laredo,” our communities’ longstanding ability of bringing people and their talents together.  As we show this film off to the world, I can only hope that the effect it has on viewers is as enticing and uplifting as I see it.  Our community is complex in ways, yet, embraces simplicity in expression and care.  We have outstanding educational institutions, truly one-of-a-kind music, talented people and invariably, our bilingual and bicultural border mix is a strength to be touted.  This film opens the door to the wonder of who we are,”  Saenz concluded.

TAMIU vice president for institutional advancement, Rosanne Palacios, said the CD, DVD or combination make for truly Laredo gifts.

“I think it’s a great gift that shares the magic of Laredo with friends and family, near and far…and the holidays are coming,” she reminded.

 “Rapsodia” composer Dr. Campbell said he was both blessed and honored to have been part of the film.

“It is an overwhelming and fulfilling experience, seeing the planning of just over a year’s work coming together. Being involved in the planning, drafting and final composing of the work, recording the live performance, and now bringing it to screen…this is the pinnacle of any composer’s path. I am truly blessed and honored to be granted the opportunity to create a work that truly celebrates culture and cultural diversity, and focuses on Laredo and the Rio Grande. I have learned once again how music can unite and cross barriers, even at times when language fails to convey,” Campbell remarked.

Austin-based filmmaker Luke Dillard directed the film.

Part of the film’s special charm is its colorful use of the sounds of Campbell’s composition as performed in concert by the Laredo Philharmonic Orchestra, under the direction of Brendan Townsend, accompanied by the famed Mariachi Nuevo Tecalitlán de Guadalajara, directed by Fernando Martínez. The performance was videotaped with multiple cameras in a special TAMIU staging in late April 2016.

KLRN is the Emmy award‐winning Public Television station for South Central Texas and broadcasts to a 30‐county radius including Webb County. Its mission is to enrich the lives of South Central Texans through the power of communication—providing quality programs and services advancing education, art and culture, and community. 

TAMIU’s long collaboration with KLRN includes its TAMIU-KLRN studio on campus.  The Studio provides students a chance to create original video content, and provides expansive learning opportunities. The University offers both Bachelor’s and Master’s degrees in Communication.

For additional information, contact the University’s Office of Public Relations, Marketing and Information Services at 956.326.2180, click on or visit offices in the Sue and Radcliffe Killam Library, Suite 268.

University summer office hours are 8 a.m. – 6 p.m. Monday – Thursday and 8 a.m. to 12 noon on Fridays.

For more about KLRN, visit


Meet TAMIU Composer, Dr. Colin Campbell