Four vocalists from McAllen High School have been named finalists for the 21st Annual Mariachi Vargas Extravaganza Best in the U.S. Vocal Competition. Only 22 high school students nationwide were selected from more than 250 entries submitted.
“These four young ladies have been working hard the last couple of months preparing to record their songs and vocal submissions for the biggest mariachi soloist vocal competition in the nation,” McAllen High Mariachi Director Alex Trevino said. “We submitted their recording auditions on October 1 and we are excited to find out that all four of them advanced to the final round.”
McAllen High earned the most spots of any high school. The judging panel included industry professionals, educators and university vocal professors.
The vocal finals will be 9 a.m. – 1 p.m. Saturday, Nov. 21 at the Lila Cockrell Theatre in San Antonio. The judges consider vocal tone, technique, interpretation, stage presence and audience engagement. First, second and third place winners will be selected in each division. One student will be selected as the “Best Mariachi Vocalist in the U.S.” and will be invited to open for Mariachi Vargas that same evening at 7:30 p.m. in the same theater.
“I am extremely proud of all of them for their dedication, preparation, and passion for what they do,” Trevino said. “They have come a long way in the last few months and will continue to work hard to represent our program, our school and McAllen ISD out at the finals.”
The entire McAllen High Mariachi Oro will compete in the full group competition. The winners at the finals will be eligible to receive scholarships and grants to help them pursue higher education.