International Music Festival to bring world music to San Antonio

It happens around this time every year, and for a week San Antonio is filled with international music. It’s called The International Music Festivaland for this week, the universal language of music seems to elevate the city. Musical bridges around the worldCEO of Anya Grokhovsky says it starts March 23 and the first two nights are at the Empire Theater.

“We will open [the] party with [a] program titled Gracias a la Vida. We bring incomparable, my favorite star, Magos Herrera. She’s a Mexican jazz singer,” Grokhovski said.

Magos Herrera, Brooklyn Rider – Niña

“Magos Herrera will be joined by Spanish accordionist Victor Prieto and our local pride, Aaron Prado Jazz Trio,” she said.

It’s Wednesday, March 23. Then on Thursday is a concert called Crucible.

“Sam Reider and human hands. This is a band that plays music from really all the roots of the world and puts it in a melting pot,” Grokhovski said.

Sam Reider and the Human Hands play “Del Boca Vista”

On Friday, the festival moves to San Fernando Cathedral for chamber music.

“The Miro Quartet based in Austin. This is the first time we have invited them, a really famous chamber music group, and they will be joined by a bassoonist,” she said. “It’s going to be a great program for classical music lovers.”

Then on Saturday they bring back an audience favourite, the pianists Amal Duo.

“Duo Amal is an Israeli-Palestinian duo composed of two pianists playing a classical program. This is their second performance for Musical Bridges, as they were here about eight years ago,” Grokhovski said. “Then the last concert of the festival will be [a] Baroque show by Austin Renaissance Ensemble.”

The Austin Renaissance Ensemble doesn’t just play the role. They look the part.

“They’re wearing their period costumes and playing period instruments, and it looks fabulous in the cathedral,” she said.

This year’s festival has a brand new family characteristic to her.

“We’re going to feature 15-minute vignettes of musicians from different cultures, and there will be representatives of those cultures in the main square with activities for kids,” Grokhovski said.

The Main Plaza event will take place at 3:30 p.m. Sunday afternoon, before the Austin Renaissance Ensemble concert inside the St. Fernando Cathedral.

“We are ready to say goodbye to [the] pandemic and we all need to lift our spirits right now, and that’s what music does,” she said.

The entire festival is free and open to the public.

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