TUCSON, ARIZ – A local lighting dealer used powerful LED lights to create a rich and saturated wash as a backdrop for the 27th annual International Mariachi Conference, held April 23-25.
By using 24 CHAUVET COLORado 6's lined up end to end, Scott Plummer, owner of Total Lighting Support, achieved a rich color wash with hues of red, green and blue, a festive accompaniment for professional and youth groups striving to preserve this piece of Mexican culture. He saved his time and the conference's money by using the LEDs.
“With the COLORado 6s, we were able to drop the power usage from a 200amp, 3-phase service to 3-20 amp circuits,” said Plummer. “And the time we saved – we had none of the stage pin cable or cutting and gelling all those lights – was substantial.”
Among the lights used, Plummer chose CHAUVET COLORado 1s to color wash classical Tuscan columns. And he rigged 150 CHAUVET LED Par 64 cans on a double truss for stage lighting.
The conference consists of two components –an educational three-day workshop for up to 1,000 youth from all over the country and concerts by professional Mariachi musicians, including pop-rock icon Linda Ronstadt, originally of Tucson and who also sings Mariachi. Ronstadt, who has been associated with the conference since her 1987 release of her Grammy Award-winning mariachi album, performed five songs. Other performers include Eugenia Leon, who has been performing mariachi for the past 30 years, groups including Mariachi Vargas de Tecalitlan and Mariachi Los Camperos de Nati Cano.
This year, 860 students participated in the workshop, which is taught by some of the best musicians from the U.S. and Mexico. The workshop culminated with musical presentations by each group, clad in traditional mariachi costumes. The winning high school group wins a $1,500 prize and scholarships from the Elisa Gastellum Memorial Foundation. The grant is designated for school-affiliated mariachi groups made up of 9th – 12th grade students from Southern Arizona.
Proceeds of the events go to the Tucson-based La Frontera Center Inc., a non-profit behavioral health agency serving children, families and adults, and to foster the traditional values of mariachi music and dance through activities that increase knowledge, artistic and technical experience.