Mexican folkloric dance in California public higher education will be in the spotlight Saturday, Feb. 18, at Fresno State where the art form began with Fresno State’s Los Danzantes de Aztlán, formed in the early 1970s.

The inaugural CSU Folklórico Show begins at 5:30 p.m. at Fresno State’s Satellite Student Union with about 56 dancers from California State University campuses in Northridge, San Jose, Los Angeles and Fresno.

Los Danzantes de Aztlán, directed by Dr. Victor Torres, is hosting the event as the senior dance troupe in the 23-campus system. Associated Students Inc. at Fresno State is a co-sponsor.

The Fresno State troupe was founded by the late Ernesto Martinez in what now is the Department of Chicano and Latin American Studies. Danzantes is the only troupe in the CSU system designated as official ambassadors of the university.

Joining Danzantes in the show are Ballet Folklórico Aztlán de Cal State CSUN, Grupo Folklórico Luna y Sol de San Jose State and Yectli Folklórico de Cal State Los Angeles.

“We hope this new folklórico show will inspire those who were not considering going to college to start thinking about this possibility,” said Torres, who chairs the Chicano and Latin American studies department. At campuses with folkloric dance programs, he added, students can pursue their academic goals and continue to develop as dancers.

General admission is $10. Fresno State students are admitted free with university ID.

Tickets are available in the Chicano and Latin American Studies office, Social Sciences Building, Room 211, or at the door.

For more information, contact Torres at 559.278.4115 or

(University Communications student news assistant Reganie Smith-Love contributed to this report).