Anji is a graduate of New Mexico State University with a Masters and Bachelors Degree of Music Education with Mariachi Studies, Latin American Music, and Conducting focus, and has Masters studies from State University of Georgia (Carrollton) and James Madison University (Harrisonburg, Virginia).
Decades in the Making
With 15 years teaching experience junior college and 26 years in public education, she has directed mariachi, choirs, piano and guitar ensembles in New Mexico, Virginia, Texas, and Georgia. Some of the dual credit classes in partnership with local school districts and El Paso Community College she has taught include: music fundamentals, music history, jazz to rock history, and music literature. Anji has presented lectures and concerts through the annual EPCC Spring Arts Festivals and actively recruits for the music department. Some of the professional stage experiences include singing with Dr. Jerry Ann Alt with Bella Voce de Las Cruces, an a cappella professional touring choir, and formerly of Masterworks Chorus (New Mexico State University Choirs) for 23 years, performing major works throughout the Southwest, Mexico, and Europe. In 2016, Anji was appointed mariachi director for Viva! El Paso, the summer musical drama that portrays the rich culture and 400-year history of the greater Paso del Norte area. As a very diverse musician, Anji plays organ, piano, harpsichord, guitarron, vihuela, guitar, accordion, and sings. It was a great honor to accompany the ballet folklorico from Colima as their pianist with Mariachi Cobre for the 20th annual Las Cruces International Mariachi Conference for the tribute to master folklorico and Renaissance man Rafael Zamarripa.
Mariachi Real de
Celebrations & Events
In March of 2018, Anji Thornton founded Mariachi Real de El Paso to promote and preserve the culture of mariachi. In addition, Mariachi Real de El Paso has collaborated with civic organizations and community members for various events such as:
● Bi-National Day; Columbus, New Mexico.
● Diocese of Las Cruces and St. Albert the Great Newman Center for the Las Cruces International Mariachi Mass; Las Cruces, New Mexico.
● Mariachi Sundays in Mesilla, Las Cruces International Mariachi Conference; Mesilla, New Mexico.
● St. Patrick’s Catholic School Bazaar; El Paso, Texas.
● Guest Artists Tacos Chinampa West; El Paso, Texas.
● Private events.
Membership is comprised of diverse personnel of professional musicians, educators, health care professionals, and college students.
For more information, please contact: Anji Thornton, 575-650-3200 or email: firstname.lastname@example.org.