A night of flamenco and mariachi music

Mariachi band Mariachi Nuevo Estilo meld hip-hop with traditional Mexican folk music.
Mariachi band Mariachi Nuevo Estilo meld hip-hop with traditional Mexican folk music.PHOTO: HEINEKEN SINGAPORE

One-night festival celebrates Madrid and Mexico City through music and dance

Heineken Cities Festival, as its name suggests, aims to celebrate different places in the world. This year, travel to places such as sunny Madrid and Mexico City through music and dance, all from one place: Singapore's Chijmes.

The festival is a one-night event happening from 7.30 to 11.30pm tonight at the former convent- turned-nightspot in Victoria Street.

Among the acts on the line-up: A sexy mariachi band that meld hip-hop with traditional Mexican folk music and an underground techno music DJ.

Performances by flamenco dancers, tako drummers and cosplayers will also provide a more cosmopolitan flavour.

Admission is free.

Viewers of America's Got Talent may find Mariachi Nuevo Estilo - Spanish for "Mariachi New Style" - familiar.


  • WHERE: Chijmes, 30 Victoria Street

    WHEN: Tonight, from 7.30pm


The band debuted on season eight of the reality talent show and are known for incorporating pop music such as LMFAO's Sexy And I Know It and Flo Rida's Low into their numbers.

The six-member band, aged from 21 to 28, are significantly younger than most mariachi performers. They will be performing 45-minute sets during the evening, which will be their first gigs in Asia.

While the group failed to make it to the show's quarter-finals, they have been keeping busy in their hometown of San Antonio, Texas, where they have played at private events of celebrities such as Desperate Housewives star Eva Longoria, whose producer friend had recommended the band.

From Mexico, make the journey into Madrid's nightclubs with Spanish techno DJ Cristian Varela, owner of the label Pornographic Records, who will hit the decks at 10.30pm with a one-hour set.

Varela, 40, who was voted Best Techno DJ in the 2013 DJ Awards, explained his record label's unusual name in a telephone interview from Madrid.

"When I started the label 15 years ago, techno music was very underground. In Spain, when something is very special and people don't understand it, they call it pornographic.

"For example, if you're in a restaurant and eat something good that you've never tasted before, you say, 'This food is pornographic'."

He says that tonight's one-hour set is short by his standards.

"I usually play for at least three hours. Actually, the longest set I've played was almost 12 hours, at Epsilon, a nightclub in Madrid, from 10pm to 9.30am. So one hour is very short for me."

Although this is his first time in Singapore, he knows of the clubbing scene here.

"Of course I've heard of Zouk," he said. "I've heard from friends that the clubs and festivals here are very, very good."

A version of this article appeared in the print edition of The Straits Times on August 28, 2015, with the headline 'A night of flamenco and mariachi music'. Print Edition | Subscribe