Composer Héctor Armienta considers himself neither Mexican or American, but MexicanAmerican. His work exists in and in between these two cultural worlds. Drawing on his training as a classical composer, his mission is to reinvent classical musical forms by incorporating music from both sides of the border. Whether it be Mariachi, music Azteca, or corridos ( folk songs) from the fields of the central California, you can find elements of this music in much of his work. This approach allows him to explore what it means to be a Mexican American through a new lens - classical music and opera.
Born and raised in Los Angeles, California, he is one of the few Chicano opera composers to have had his work performed nationally and internationally. His awards and commissions include those from Meet the Composer, the National Endowment for the Arts, Fort Worth Opera, Opera Pacific, Arts International, Opera Pacific, the Pacific Symphony, Opera Southwest, Oakland East Bay Symphony, and Western Stage Theater. His work for orchestra, theater, and opera has received support from six NEA grants in artistic excellence. Most recently, he was awarded a 2022 CCSRE Arts Mellon Fellowship at Stanford University and a 2021 Map Fund award. [read more...]