All-Female Mariachi Band Flor de Toloache Is Creating a Virtual Reality Concert Experience

Lead Photo: Photo by Andrei Averbuch. Courtesy of Criteria Entertainment
Photo by Andrei Averbuch. Courtesy of Criteria Entertainment
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A morning with Flor de Toloache on the speakers is a good remedy for whatever upheaval is currently roiling your soul. The all-woman mariachi band was formed by core members in NYC. Count yourself lucky if you got to hear these talents crooning on your train home from work — they got their start busking on the city subway. Nowadays, they’re touring the world with a contingent of rotating band members, with red haired founding member and third-generation mariachi singer Mireya Ramos’ vocals sliding up and down over original compositions and Juanga covers like a dream.

For those who weren’t lucky enough to catch them in their MTA days, there is good news: the group has been tapped to have their concert tomorrow at New York’s Rockwood Music Hall broadcast with immersive virtual reality technology. It’s a project being put together by VR technology firm Endless Riff, and will make Rockwood “the first virtual concert venue in social VR,” according to an Endless Riff press release.

The event coincides with some big expectations for the future of consumer VR technology. Despite Facebook’s failure to connect with customers earlier this year at the levels expected for its Oculus Rift project, industry predictions say that U.S. consumers will buy 2.5 million VR units in 2017, for a total revenue cashout of $660 million. In January, Live Nation and Hulu premiered their own VR concert series with Lil Wayne.

At any rate, the concert will be an excellent opportunity for people to get a sense of the magic of a Flor de Toloache live show. The group has managed to defy gender norms that typically discourage women from pursuing a musical career in the field — right down to song lyrics that often cast women in a troublemaking, trifling light. “There are certainly powerful and well-known female mariachi singers who have rebuffed those kinds of themes,” band member Shae Fiol said in one interview. “We’re trying to add to the balance.”

Mariachi Flor de Toloache plays New York’s Rockwood Music Hall in VR tomorrow, June 27. To purchase tickets, click here.