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Enjoying Mexico's Musical Heritage

September 23, 1993

No matter in what end of the county you reside, there will be an opportunity this weekend to enjoy a centuries-old form of Mexican music.

On Friday, the Oxnard Auditorium plays host to the "Sones y Cantares Mexicanos" show, a collaborative effort featuring four musical acts, including Oxnard's own Conjunto Hueyapan, a group of four brothers, one sister, two nephews and a niece from the musically talented Herrera family.

"The show is going to focus on a musical form that is probably the most ancient and deeply rooted of the traditional Mexican styles," said group leader Fermin Herrera. "There are different styles of sones, the most popular of which is mariachi."

Sones, said Herrera, are played on traditional instruments, including the harp, violin and guitar. Herrera's group will concentrate on harp music from Veracruz.

Joining the Herrera ensemble will be the Trio Chicontepec, performing violin music from the Huasteca region; Mariachi Los Camperos de Nati Cano; and 13-year old vocalist Ixya Herrera, Fermin Herrera's daughter. Ixya has sung backup for Linda Ronstadt.

"This is not intended just as entertainment, but as a form of education," said Fermin Herrera. "There will be explanatory notes to introduce the various musical styles and instruments and point out the characteristics of all the musical forms. . . . It's a question of providing information regarding the music so the experience is more meaningful."

Show time is 8 p.m. General admission is $15 and $10. Call 486-2424. The auditorium is at 800 Hobson Way.

On Saturday, these same performers--minus the mariachi group--will travel to Cal Lutheran University in Thousand Oaks, for the "Festival del Son Mexicano," a condensed version of the show. The performance will begin at 2 p.m. in the Preus-Brandt Forum. General admission is $5. The university is at 60 W. Olsen Road. Call 493-3302.

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