GOING VARSITY IN MARIACHI
Section: Festival Favorites
Directors: Alejandra Vasquez, Sam Osborn
Logline: In the competitive world of high school mariachi, the musicians from the South Texas borderlands reign supreme. Under the guidance of Coach Abel Acuña, the teenage captains of Edinburg North High School’s acclaimed team must turn a shoestring budget and diverse crew of inexperienced musicians into state champions.
Panelists: Alejandra Vasquez (director), Sam Osborn (director), Julia Pontecorvo (producer), Abby Garcia (subject/mariachi musician)
Sales Agent: Ariel Richter, Fifth Season
Premiered: Sunday, March 12; Next screening Wednesday, March 15 5:30 p.m. CT at the Stateside Theatre
Key Quotes: Alejandra Vasquez: “Going Varsity in Mariachi follows a year in the life of a competitive high school mariachi team in South Texas. We follow Edinburg North High School and feature a couple of other schools, but it’s really a sports film that’s kind of also a coming of age story about growing up along the border.”
Julia Pontecorvo: “I didn’t know how rich the culture was, how nuanced the music was, how diverse the music is as well.”
Abby Garcia: “Mariachi comforts me and whatever emotion I’m feeling, like if I’m sad or happy, there’s a song for it. So, there’s always a song you can relate to. It’s a comfort, it’s home because I grew up around it and especially in high school, it was my safe place. So, it’s really special to me… I used to be really shy and it was getting out of my shell, because you have to perform. It’s like you have to put on this persona when you put on the traje [suit] when you go perform… If you’re singing, you have to act out the song.”
Sam Osborn: “We knew we had to be here [at SXSW]. I mean, we were really hoping we would get in because it’s perfect for the audiences [here]. We’ve been saying if there’s any audience that really gets this movie, it’s gonna be the South by Southwest audience.”
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