April 2, 2019, Ashgabat – American ensemble Mariachi Champaña Nevin completed its tour in Turkmenistan with a standing room only concert in Ashgabat March 29. The ensemble visited Turkmenistan March 24-31 and gave a series of workshops and concerts sponsored by the U.S. Department of State and the U.S. Embassy in Ashgabat.
The Mariachi Champaña Nevin ensemble, based in San Diego, California, plays a style of music known as “mariachi,” characterized by a distinctive instrumentation style, unique performance and singing modes, and traditional costumes. Led by professor, composer, and trumpeter Dr. Jeff Nevin, Ph.D., the ensemble has performed for over two decades across the United States, Mexico, Kazakhstan, Russia, South Korea, and in other countries.
While in Turkmenistan, the musicians offered workshops for students at the Turkmen National Conservatory and D. Ovezov Specialized Music College, as well as a music presentation at the American Center in Ashgabat. The ensemble performed at three public concerts in Balkanabat, Turkmenbashy, and Ashgabat. The concert in Ashgabat featured a mix of American southwestern and Turkmen music, with a joint performance by the Mariachi Champaña Nevin and Ashgabat ensembles. In total, more than 1,850 people attended the concerts, workshops, and public events.
The ensemble’s leader Dr. Jeff Nevin commented, “It’s been wonderful to spend this week in Turkmenistan. The people are wonderful; everybody has been so nice and very receptive to the music. I’ve had the opportunity to listen to many of the traditional Turkmen musicians, and we performed some of our traditional songs with them.” U.S. Ambassador to Turkmenistan Allan Mustard added, “They had a fantastic response from the crowds; the crowds loved them. The leader of this ensemble is a professor, who has a doctorate degree in music, and he shared his knowledge of mariachi music as a part of our cultural outreach.”
For more information about this program, please contact the Public Affairs Section of the U.S. Embassy in Ashgabat at 47-35-06 (1) or e-mail AmericanCenterAshgabat@state.gov.