As part of the sister-city celebrations between Ashland and Guanajuato, Mexico, the Southern Oregon University Music Department will present a concert by flamenco guitar virtuoso,Rafael Cuen Garibi. The concert will take place at 8 p.m. Saturday, April 18, in the Music Recital Hall on the SOU campus, 1250 Siskiyou Blvd., Ashland.

As part of the sister-city celebrations between Ashland and Guanajuato, Mexico, the Southern Oregon University Music Department will present a concert by flamenco guitar virtuoso,Rafael Cuen Garibi. The concert will take place at 8 p.m. Saturday, April 18, in the Music Recital Hall on the SOU campus, 1250 Siskiyou Blvd., Ashland.

Garibi is currently professor of music and coordinator of the guitar program at the University of Guanajuato School of Music, where he also oversees the electronic music laboratory. He has performed as a flamenco guitar soloist for concert series and international guitar festivals throughout Europe and North America.

SOU Music Department chair and percussion professor Terry Longshore will join Garibi on several pieces, playing the cajón. The cajón looks much like a tapered wooden box. The player sits on the and uses his hands to drum on the front of it. Flamenco players are sometimes accompanied by the instrument probably because it resembles the sound of slapping the back of the guitar, something flamenco players often do.

Garibi was born in Mexico City and started studying flamenco guitar at age seven. Garibi later joined the flamenco group, The Romanceros, in Guanajuato and studied with classical guitarists Urban Gomez and Pepe Muñoz of Spain, Pedro Sergio Salcedo and Ricardo Carrillo of Mexico, and Leo Brouwer of Cuba.

Flamenco has its origins in a small region of Andalucia in Southern Spain. Flamenco guitar started as accompaniment for cante, songs sung in a particular way. It also is played as accompaniment for flamenco dancing.

Garibi received a bachelor's and master's degree in music from the University of Guanajuato and has performed many concerts and recitals throughout Mexico. He has performed as a soloist with the Symphony Orchestra of the University of Guanajuato and with the Chamber Orchestra. Currently he is a member of the Guitar Quartet and the Early Music Ensemble, Los Tiempos Pasados, where he plays lute, guitar and percussion instruments.

He also has performed concerts and master classes at the University of Texas, SOU and the University of Santiago, Chile, and has composed and arranged music of many different styles.

Garibi will teach a master class for SOU guitar majors from 3 to 5 p.m. Friday, April 17, in the Music Recital Hall at SOU.

Tickets for the April 18 concert performance are $15 general admission. Students of all ages are admitted free. Tickets are available at the box office before the performance or by calling 552-6101. See sou.edu/music.