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Young musicians from Las Cruces and Juarez to make “Music Beyond Borders”

Leora Zeitlin

This weekend, more than 100 young musicians ranging from age 12 to mid-20s will come together to perform in both Las Cruces and Juarez in a pair of concerts titled “Music Beyond Borders.” Students from the NMSU Philharmonia and conductor Simon Gollo will perform with students from Esperanza Azteca Juarez, a social and musical training program in Juarez that is directed by Jove Garcia.

Gollo lives far from his native Venezuela, where he graduated from the famed music training program El Sistema. But when he met Jove Garcia, he saw a kindred musician and kindred spirit dedicated to bringing the joy of music to all people. “I just had the feeling that I was home,” he said about their meeting, in this interview with Garcia and Intermezzo host Leora Zeitllin. They organized the concert to give the students and the audiences from both sides of the border a unique musical experience.

“I think a border should be a place where we meet with another culture,” Gollo said.

Esperanza Azteca Juarez is one of 85 orchestras and choruses from across Mexico, inspired by El Sistema. Each orchestra and chorus has 100 musicians, who practice every day after school from 4-7:30. “For some of our kids, it’s been a salvation. It’s totally changed their lives,” Garcia said.

The combined orchestra will play music from Dvorak’s “New World Symphony,” two works by Mexican composer Arturo Marquez, and music by George Gershwin and Leonard Bernstein. Listen here to learn more about this collaborative project and the music the orchestras will be performing:

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