Local middle school putting on musical that explores the influen - NBC Right Now/KNDO/KNDU Tri-Cities, Yakima, WA |

Local middle school putting on musical that explores the influence of Latin music

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PASCO, WA - A choir teacher in Pasco wants students to learn more about the history of Latin music and how it shaped the style of music they listen to today. She's doing this through a musical that explores the influence of Latin music in the U.S.

Reporter Stefani Zenteno learned today that students at Ochoa Middle School have been rehearsing for the show "Viva La Musica", or "Long Live Music". The show explores the influence Latin musicians have had in the U.S.

John Nelson is the band director at Ochoa Middle School, and he says nowadays a lot of the music students listen to has Latin roots.

"I think it's important for this population for these kids because I think there's a lot of things that we teach them that they don't know about," Nelson said. "A lot of it is their parents own music that their parents really like listening to, that and we like to give them a history and seeing the importance of it in this country."

More than 100 students will be performing, and there will be jazz and mariachi bands. The show will be at Chiawana High School Thursday, the 27th at 6:30 p.m.

Samantha Salvatos will be dancing and singing in the show, and she explains why being a part of this is important to her.

"Remembering your culture for everyone who is Latino, and not even if you're Latino," Salvatos said. "Just seeing this really cool musical about people who encouraged themselves and went followed their dreams and were big in the music."

The musical show is open to anyone and tickets are $5 for students and adults.

"[We are] letting the kids know about their culture and learn about their history through music," Nelson said. "We are also combining all of our music department students as much as we can."