Music Mexico Symposium

2022 Music Mexico Symposium at Dartmouth

Discovering repertoire of the Americas and Mexican arts at Dartmouth

May 26 & 27, 2022

Join us for an interdisciplinary two-day event on the past and future of Mexican repertoire. Musicians, performers and scholars will contextualize the musical traditions of Mexico from before the revolution to the present day, and will discuss the representation of Mexican music in education and the industry today. These themes and more will be explored through presentation, discussion and performance, including an opening concert featuring new and classic works from the repertoire of Mexican concert music as well as a Dartmouth College Wind Ensemble concert premiering exciting new works for winds.

The symposium is also a springboard for our launch of the Mexican Repertory Initiative at Dartmouth.

Download the Playbill

Watch the Symposium

Recordings of the talks and concerts are now available to watch on YouTube.

Watch on YouTube

Mexican Repertoire Collection at Dartmouth

A sortable, searchable and expanding collection of repertoire by Mexican and Mexican-American composers.
View the Collection >

Symposium Schedule

Thu, May 26, 4:30 pm • Top of the Hop
Welcome Reception 

A special event for symposium attendees, Hop Members and community partners. Enjoy a drink and a chat with composers, artists, scholars and dignitaries attending the Music Mexico Symposium.

Mary Lou Aleskie, Howard Gilman '44 Executive Director, Hopkins Center for the Arts
Alberto Fierro Garza, Consul General of Mexico in Boston
Brian Messier, Dartmouth College Wind Ensemble Director
Barbara Will, Vice Provost for Academic Initiatives

Thu, May 26, 8 pm • Faulkner Recital Hall, Hopkins Center
Mexican Chamber Music Concert

A night of new music and classics from the repertoire of Mexican chamber music hosted by Coast's Taylor Ho Bynum and DCWE's Brian Messier.

Watch the Concert >

Fri, May 27, 10 am – 4:30 pm
Discussions and Activities

Hear from musicians, artists and scholars on the state of Mexican art and music today—including a tour of Orozco Murals in Baker Library and the launch of the Mexican Repertoire Initiative. Followed by a post-reception with food & beverage.

10-11 am: Tour of Orozco Murals at Baker-Berry Library with Mary Coffey
11:15–11:45 am: Mexican Music History: Pre-revolution to today by Benjamín Juarez—Watch >
11:45 am – 12:30 pm: Surpassing La Cucaracha by Sixto Montesinos—Watch >
12:30–1:30 pm: Lunch in the Hood Atrium
1:45–2 pm: Mexican identity and visual culture by Leticia Neria—Watch >
2–2:45 pm: ¡Cantaré!: VocalEssence Mexican composer residency program by Philip Brunelle—Watch >
2:45–3:15 pm: Sí Se Puede: Victory Players Mexican composer residency program by TianHui Ng and Jorge Sosa—Watch >
3:15–4 pm: Life In the Hyphen: My Experience as a Mexican-American Music Student by Eric Jimenez and Cory Meals—Watch >
4–4:30 pm: The Mexican Repertoire Initiative and Collection with Brian Messier, Mary Lou Aleskie and Marisa Canales—Watch >
Followed by a post-reception with food & beverage in the Black Family Visual Arts Center.

Fri, May 27, 6:30–7:15 pm • Top of the Hop 
Public Talk: Musical Diplomacy

Mexican American musician and educator Sixto Montesinos talks to composers Rodrigo Martinez, Nubia Jaime Donjuan and Juan Pablo Contreras ahead of the premiere of their works at the DCWE concert.

Watch the Talk >

Fri, May 27, 7:30 pm • Spaulding Auditorium
Dartmouth College Wind Ensemble 

A celebration of Mexican music featuring four exciting premieres by our three Mexican composers-in-residence in this culminating exhibition of the Music Mexico Symposium.

Watch the Concert >

Affiliated Collaborative Faculty

Xóchitl C. Chávez, Ph.D.
Assistant Professor, UC Riverside Department of Music
CO-PI Soundscapes of the People: A Musical Ethnography of Pueblo, Colorado  

Xóchitl C. Chávez looks forward to bridging the Indigenous Oaxacan composers in Mexico and California with the Mexican Repertory Initiative at Dartmouth.

Johanna Lundy
Assistant Professor of Horn, The University of Arizona Fred Fox School of Music
Principal Horn, Tucson Symphony Orchestra
Founder and Director, The Borderlands Ensemble

Johanna Lundy has contributed to the Mexican Repertory Initiative at Dartmouth through the commission of new works by Mexican composers and the assemblage of wind chamber repertoire by Mexican and Mexican-American composers.

Benjamín Juárez
AR 771 –Managing Performing Arts Organizations

Benjamín Juárez is a professor of fine arts at Boston University's College of Fine Arts (CFA) and professor of the practice in the Arts Administration degree program. He served as dean of the College of Fine Arts from 2010 until 2015. Prior to joining BU, he was general director the Centro Nacional de las Artes (CENART), Mexico's national arts center, during which time he launched joint programs with the Kennedy Center and Carnegie Hall. 


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Latin American, Latino and Caribbean Studies Program at Dartmouth

Reflections from the Producers

Karina Sainz

Karina Sainz

At eight years old I first picked up the clarinet to play in the school band at Longfellow Elementary School, a Spanish immersion school in San Diego, California. As a first- and second-generation Mexican-American woman growing up in California I was surrounded by music from my culture but it would take 30 years for me to hear its influence in “classical” orchestral music. It happened this year in Spaulding Auditorium during the Dartmouth College Wind Ensemble winter performance. As they started performing the premiere of Mexican composer Eduardo Aguilar’s Cerro y Nube I heard the familiar sounds that are undeniably Mexican and began to cry. It was at that moment that I realized how profound and important this initiative is. Music is meant to transcend borders and that’s exactly what we are doing, uniting us all and bringing to the spotlight talented and underrepresented artists. ¡Qué sigue la causa!

Brian Messier

Brian Messier

I stumbled upon this project. Curiosity and an increased national focus on the US/Mexico border made me question what I knew about Mexico and, in particular, Mexican music. I quickly learned that there was a void of music for Wind Band by Mexican composers, a reality that did not align with the rich musical history and culture of the nation. One subsequent commission of composer Enrico Chapela turned into a planned tour of Mexico, which in turn led to a competition to create authentic Mexican music for said tour. And thus, here we are three years later, bringing people together from across the US and Mexico to have deepening conversations about the state of music in Mexico and how it is represented in the United States and beyond, and to enjoy original Mexican works by talented young composers. This is the most meaningful musical work I have had the privilege to be a part of.