A grassroots festival launched in 2014 in Austin showcases a comparatively lesser-known style of Mexican folk music called huapango. Now entering its third year, the festival will kick off on May 28 and is looking forward to another exciting time in the Texas Hill Country.
Things to Do
Huapango Sin Fronteras Now Entering Third Year of Great Festivities in Austin
Huapango Sin Fronteras will feature bands from both the huasteca and Sierra Gorda regions of Mexico, with musicians hailing from Texas, California, Illinois, Mississippi, and Florida. This string-based music is generated from the Mexican states of Guanajuato, San Luis Potosi, and Queretero, and artists in this year’s festival include Los Camperos de Valles, Las Palomitas Serranas, Trio Paseador Hidalguense, Trio Cantores de Valles, Javier Rodríguez y Sus Huapangueros, y Raúl Orduña y Los Trovadores.
The event is designed as a family affairs, and the organizers welcome everyone from the huasteca and Sierra Gorda regions both in Mexico and in the United States to join in the fun. The first of its kind to feature such music in America, Huapango Sin Fronteras supports its musicians, poets, and dancers by introducing their genre to a much wider audience. This third annual celebration of Huapango Sin Fronteras will take place from 2 p.m. to 2 a.m. Saturday, May 28 at Plaza R3, located at 7704 FM 973 in Austin.
Festival organizers welcome younger generations to enjoy and participate and hope that one day they will help sustain the music into the future. A subset of the larger Mexican style of music known as son, huapango arribeño bands consist of four members, including a violin (possibly two), a Mexican guitarra, and a smaller guitar called a jarana or vihuela. Traditionally, these bands will play at dances, two at a time, situated across from each other. The two bands perform in a topada, in which they alternate songs. The singers will freestyle their lyrics based on the setting and the theme of the evening, with dances often commencing in the evening and continuing on overnight, into the next morning. This year’s event will feature a day full of music, traditional foods, and children’s activities, with a topada starting at 10 p.m. Tickets are $30 in advance and can be purchased by contacting the festival coordinators at the link provided here, or visitors can pay $35 at the door.