Sones de México Ensemble and its Board of Directors join other community organizations, academic societies, and private corporations in calling for the immediate retraction of the U.S. Executive Order of January 27, 2017 that bans or puts limitations on immigration from seven Muslim-majority countries. We also oppose the plans and rhetoric behind the building a wall (real or imaginary) between Mexico and the United States to limit the free and bilateral cultural and economic exchange between two neighbor countries, and we oppose any limitations and further cuts to our public school education, including valuable Head Start, dual language, and after-school arts programs that benefit our communities.
This Executive Order, the isolationist rhetoric, and the elitist policies that are quickly emerging in our government violate the core values of our organization. Sones de México Ensemble stands by its values as a champion of human diversity, inclusivity, the exploration and celebration of one’s identity, free inquiry, creativity, and the mutual enrichment that comes from artistic collaboration and the exchange of ideas between people from different cultures.
For over twenty years, Sones de Mexico Ensemble has served as an organization that promotes greater appreciation of Mexican folk and traditional music and culture through innovative performance, education, and dissemination, mostly in the United States.
We aspire to be an integral part of the American music vocabulary. Many times, we have stated our wish to inspire, not only those of Mexican heritage, but also others to explore their own cultural heritage. Indeed, among the highlights of our musical career are the various collaborations we have had with musicians from other musical and cultural traditions, including African, African-American, Blues, Chinese, Western Classical, Country & Western, Irish folk, Jazz, Rock, and South American styles. They remain some of our most popular recordings and proudest accomplishments.
Sones de México Ensemble is committed to a globally engaged dialogue. We reject statements and policies that support xenophobia, Islamo-phobia, anti-Semitism, misogyny, homophobia and anti-immigration that have been unleashed in the course of the recent presidential campaign.
In recent months, it has become clear that our work is more important now than ever. Fear and uncertainty has gripped our communities, fueled by hate speech and the words of powerful people. The aftershocks have put vulnerable groups at risk both symbolically and, in some cases, physically.
Many of our constituents get the impression that these views are the will of the majority and are spreading unopposed. We feel it is important to refute this belief and make a clear statement to our supporters that we join with a broad spectrum of Americans with a mission and purpose that is in opposition to these views.
It is a mandate for us to publicly reaffirm our long held values of inclusivity and tolerance; to disseminate our values, to teach, and to behave in ways that are more public and more political; to share our music and our message; and to offer our voices and our commitment to the communities in which we live and work, local and global, wherever and whenever possible.
ABOUT SONES DE MEXICO ENSEMBLE: The group is Chicago’s premier folk music organization specializing in Mexican ‘son,’ a genre encompassing the roots of mariachi music and other regional styles, including huapango, gustos, chilenas, son jarocho, and more. The ensemble was formed in 1994 and soon incorporated as a non-profit organization to keep the tradition of Mexican ‘son’ alive in its many regional forms. As a performer and recording artist, they have developed and popularized many original arrangements of Mexican traditional tunes. Its original work has experimented cross-culturally with symphonic, Irish, folk, blues, C&W, jazz and rock, though never abandoning its roots in Mexican son.
The group has released six CDs: íQue Florezca! (Let it Bloom); Fandango on 18th Street; the GRAMMY™ nominated Esta Tierra Es Tuya (This Land is Your Land); Fiesta Mexicana (a children’s album); íViva la Revolución!; and 13 B’ak’tun.
Sones de Mexico Ensemble is a 501(c)(3) not-for-profit organization with a commitment to teaching. The mission of Sones de México Ensemble is to promote greater appreciation of Mexican folk and traditional music and culture through innovative performance, education, and dissemination.
The members of Sones de Mexico Ensemble Board of Directors are Randy Adamsick, Enriqueta Rodriguez Bauer, Alvaro Obregón, Tania Kadakia, Henry Roa, Tom Bracy, and Juan Díes.