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College of Southern Nevada mariachi group takes top places in national competition

Posted at 11:36 PM, Dec 09, 2020

LAS VEGAS (KTNV) — The College of Southern Nevada's official mariachi group bested competition from across the country at the 26th Annual Mariachi Vargas Extravaganza National Vocal Competition.

Mariachi Plata member and CSN student Yasmine Duenes took first place at the Dec. 5 event, while a member of the team and student Precious Carrasco took third in the vocal competition.

The event was held virtually this year due to the COVID-19 pandemic.

Last year, students from Mariachi Plata took first and second place in the vocalist competition.

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"This is a historic milestone for our CSN family and Southern Nevada community," said CSN President Dr. Federico Zaragoza. "The results from these prestigious national competitions show that Mariachi Plata reflects the world-class standards of our music and performing arts programs. Mariachi is an important part of our culture, particularly to Southern Nevada's growing Latino population of Mexican descent. I am so proud of everyone involved in this tremendous effort, including the many local mariachis that keep this tradition strong."

Mariachi Plata is comprised of students from CSN's mariachi courses, part of the college's fine arts music curriculum.

The Mariachi Vargas Extravaganza National Vocal Competition hosted a nationwide search in October that attracted top talent from across the country. Hundreds of vocalists auditioned by video submission, and 35 students from across the United States were selected to compete in elementary, middle school, high school and college categories.