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UH Moment

UH Moment: Mariachi Violinist

“Mariachi music is very spontaneous; it’s very on the spot. There’s no time to think. Everything is in the moment,”


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"My name is Samantha Rose Arizpe. I am studying violin performance with a minor in marketing."

Andrzej Grabiec
Andrzej Grabiec

Samantha Arizpe is studying with the great Andrzej Grabiec, concertmaster and professor of violin at the University of Houston Moores School of Music.


"I chose violin because I felt like that matched my character. It just called my name," she said. "I decided to start out with violin, but my mother wished for piano."

Moores provides comprehensive training to gifted artists. Their musicianship oftentimes is inspired and informed by many muses. Samantha has been a musician since the age of seven. A veteran of competitions, performances and workshops, including the Texas Music Festival, her love of the violin began in mariachi bands.

Samantha 1"My uncle and a grandfather of mine use to play in a trio together in San Antonio, so I guess it was just a part of me already and it was time to join in on a mariachi group," she said.

Samantha says the discipline of playing mariachi music informs her classical violin studies and performances. She hopes her UH studies lead to a violin teaching position or a marketing position with an arts group. Her artistry reminds her to stay true to herself.

"Mariachi music is very spontaneous; it's very on the spot. There's no time to think. Everything is in the moment," Arizpe said. "I feel that that showed me not to be afraid. If you really love something, you're going to work for it and be proud of what you're doing."

Student musicians are part of what's happening at the University of Houston. I'm Marisa Ramirez.

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