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UT Austin community celebrates Diez y Seis de Septiembre

Diez y Seis de Septiembre (September 16) will be celebrated at The University of Texas at Austin this week with free concerts on campus and guest speakers describing the reason for the celebration — a priest’s heroic call in 1810 for Mexico’s independence.

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AUSTIN, Texas —Diez y Seis de Septiembre (September 16) will be celebrated at The University of Texas at Austin this week with free concerts on campus and guest speakers describing the reason for the celebration — a priest’s heroic call in 1810 for Mexico’s independence.

Father Miguel Hidalgo y Costilla’s “grito de Dolores” (“cry of Dolores”) on Sept. 16, 1810, at the village of Dolores, near Guanajuato, called for the end of Spanish rule in Mexico. On September 16, 1825, the Republic of Mexico officially declared Diez y Seis de Septiembre its national Independence Day. Celebrations of that independence were brought to the United States by immigrants from Mexico, and through the years their descendants and other people who enjoy the Mexican culture, music and traditions have joined in the celebrations.

The Center for Mexican American Studies (CMAS) and the Mexican American Culture Committee at UT Austin will present a free concert on Thursday (Sept. 14) by Agustín Lira and Alma, an all-acoustic ensemble. The music begins at 2 p.m. in the Texas Union Showroom, 2.208. It will feature original compositions by Lira, a co-founder of El Teatro Campesino, as well as works by composers from throughout Latin America. For more information, call 471-2136 or visit the Web site www.utexas.edu/student/txunion/tuc/index.html

At 6 p.m. until 10 p.m. Thursday (Sept. 14), groups including Los Vatos Locos, Roy Lozano’s Ballet Folklórico, UT’s Mariachi Paredes de Tejastitlán, and the Aztlan Dance Company will perform on the Main Mall. Games as well as free prizes and goodies will also will be part of the festivities. For more information, call (512) 475-6645 or visit the Web site www.utexas.edu/student/txunion/tuc/index.html The event is hosted by the Mexican American Culture Committee and is co-sponsored by CMAS and the Hispanic Affairs Agency.

Also celebrating Diez y Seis de Septiembre is the Hispanic Faculty/Staff Association, which will hold its first fall meeting at noon Thursday (Sept. 14) in Main Building 210. The guest speaker will be Dr. José Limón, Ph.D. , professor of English and anthropology at UT Austin and the new director of the Center for Mexican American Studies.

The Mexican culture and traditions also will be celebrated during CMAS events later in September. On Sept. 20 the center will host a bienvenida for students, faculty, and staff at Jalisco Restaurant & Bar, 414 Barton Springs Road, 7 p.m. Refreshments will be provided. New CMAS director José Limón will offer the welcome, and Austin’s own Mariachi Estrella will provide the music. The Austin community is invited to attend.

On Sept. 28, the Nahualli Festival will present the trio Los Morales in a concert celebrating the music of Mexico. The concert will take place at 8 p.m. in Batts Auditorium, room 7. Los Morales, whose members are the brothers Héctor, Carlos and Julio, play a diverse array of instruments and perform many genres of Mexican folk music. Opening for them will be Gustavo López, a composer from Juchitán, Oaxaca. The festival is co-sponsored by the Centro de Arte y Cultura Nahualli, CMAS, and MEChA, and partially funded by the City of Austin Cultural Arts Commission. For more information, call the pager 706-0238 or send e-mail to tlaloc777@yahoo.com