The 2nd Annual Mariachi and Tequila Festival will take place in Chicago on Nov. 16 at the Auditorium Theater of Roosevelt University. Maria Elenal Leal, daughter of the one and only Mexican icon Lola Beltran, will take part in the festival.
EXTRA: What does it mean for you to participate in the festival?
Maria Elena Leal: I feel very happy. It is a good idea that this exists and for that I want to congratulate the organizers for making it possible.
Have you been in Chicago before? Do you go on tour to other U.S. cities?
I like Chicago very much. It is one of the cities in the U.S. that I like the most. It is monumental, cosmopolitan, intense with a great cultural life, and furthermore, has spectacular vegetation like lakes and parks.
Which repertoire will you present in this festival?
Songs from my mother, Lola Beltran’s repertoire, such as “Cucurrucucu Paloma,” “Paloma Negra,” “El Herradero,” “Cuando Sale la Luna,” “Si Nos Dejan” and “La Media Vuelta.”
What makes mariachi such a big tradition that connects with a lot of people?
Mariachi is our national tradition. It’s music and its members’ clothing. Their charro suits so beautifuly identify them in an immediate way before the world. Its sound is festive, strong, dynamic and beautiful. It cheers you up. It gives you happiness when you listen to it, and even more if you are far from your country.
How is Mariachi music evolving?
Different instruments have been incorporated, such as the keyboard for example.
What future plans do you have?
Keep working and show the world the great legacy left to me by my mother Lola Beltran.
This post is also available in: Spanish