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Enjoy award-winning musicians and free concerts this week


By Camie Sands

San Miguel’s famous music festival, now celebrating its 35th year, continues into the second week after a virtually sold-out opening last weekend. The electrifying Daedelus String Quartet will perform gala concerts at 7pm at the Teatro Ángela Peralta (from 150 pesos entrance) tonight and Saturday. Founded in 2000 at the Marlboro Music Festival, this quartet has received plaudits from critics and audiences alike for the security, technical finish, interpretive unity and sheer gusto of its performances. Good seats are still available from the theater’s box office.

As part of the free 35th Anniversary Concert Series, Onix Ensemble will give a concert Sunday, August 4, at 6pm at the theater. They play the best of Latin American contemporary music. Their concert last year brought the audience spontaneously to its feet with wild applause. This is a ‘not-to-be-missed’ concert that is given as a gift to the city by Conaculta. Onix has won the Escena Award on four occasions; the Fomento a Proyectos y Coinversiones Culturales Award and received a Top Ten Grammy Latino nomination. The group was founded by the Festival’s Artistic Director, Alejandro Escuer, flautist. Ensemble members play flute, clarinet, violin, viola and piano. They will perform works by Armando Luna , Gabriela Ortiz, Samuel Zyman, Alberto Ginastera  and Sebastian Currier .

Wednesday, August 7, Ana Cervantes’ free piano concert titled “Vuelos y Visionarios” will take place at 7pm at Teatro Ángela Peralta. Her imaginative programming has earned her the title of “Ambassador of Mexican Music.” Her most recent international commission, “Canto de la Monarca: Mujeres en México,” which she will perform Wednesday, is an homage to women who have made their mark on the social and cultural history of Mexico. In addition she will interpret from Silvia Berg El sueño … el vuelo [Frida Kahlo y su Casa Azul]; Marcela Rodríguez Todo en Fin, el silencio lo ocupaba  [Sor Juana Inés de la Cruz]; Horacio Uribe El viaje nocturno de Quetzalpapálotl  among others. Critics consider Cervantes — the daughter of a Mexican father and American mother — “a physical and emotional musician with an extraordinary touch, dominating tone and color; an overwhelmingly intense artist with great interpretive qualities and great passion.”

Thursday, August 8, the 30-plus advanced music students and many of their instructors will come together to play at 7pm at the theater as the “Orquesta del Festival de San Miguel.” The orchestra has been preparing under the direction of Maestro Alvaro G. Díaz Rodriguez, an oboist and conductor. Their program will include works by H.I.F. von Biber and Stockhausen, among other selections to be announced from the stage. This should be an exciting evening to experience what this exuberant and youthful talent has put together with their seasoned professors over the course of only 12 days – especially considering all the other activities of the academic program, including the free Anniversary Celebration Recitals they are giving all around town.

During the free Anniversary Celebration Recital series plan to attend on Saturday, August 3, at 2pm as a “Celebration Academic Ensemble” will play a selection from classic to contemporary favorites in the courtyard of Camino Silvestre (Correo 43) and the new location of Nectar Casa of Tea. Stopping by is an excellent way to have the chance to visit with these talented young people and meet their professional mentors.

On Sunday, August 4, enjoy a Sunday brunch at Hotel Imperio de Angeles featuring successive short recitals starting at noon by “Celebration Academic Ensembles and Soloists” as well as a performance of Baroque music by festival instructors Eunice Padilla, harpsichord, and Alvaro Diaz, oboist. Ms. Padilla has played both as a soloist or in chamber music ensembles in Mexico, Venezuela, Uruguay, the United States and Europe. Oboist and conductor Diaz has performed as soloist with many orchestras. Come out and be part of what will prove to be a delightful early afternoon. Address: Just after the entrance to Los Frailes heading out of San Miguel – Carr. San Miguel-Celaya km 2. 415-152-9300.

Next Friday, August 9, from 5-6pm attend a special performance of Baroque music at Moyshen, The Gallery, inside Fábrica La Aurora, as part of the Anniversary Celebration Recital series. Wine will be served and this is the perfect setting as Moyshen, The Gallery has a wonderful concert presentation area surrounded by the art of some of Mexico’s most famous contemporary artists.

This week of musical variety by renowned performers will lead into the third weekend of the festival featuring gala concerts at 7pm at the Angela Peralta Theater, August 9 and 10, by the Gryphon Trio, one of the world’s preeminent piano trios and twice winners of the Juno Award for the Classical Album of the Year.

The 35th Annual San Miguel Chamber Music Festival continues until August 17. For more information on all concerts, including free 35th Anniversary Celebration Concerts and Recitals, music programs and group profiles see or visit our office in the Bellas Artes on the second floor, 154-8722.

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