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Horseshoe Bay Cultural Enrichment Features John Arthur Martinez, Centralis String Quartet

Singer-songwriter John Arthur Martinez will perform six songs off his latest release, 'San Antonio Woman,' accompanied by the Centralis String Quartet of Houston during the inaugural event for Horseshoe Bay Cultural Enrichment on May 12. File photo

HORSESHOE BAY — People often think they need to head east to Austin or south to San Antonio for cultural events, but one Highland Lakes group is trying to change that perception.

“The idea was to hold events here in Horseshoe Bay so residents didn’t feel like they have to drive to Austin, San Antonio, or even Houston and Dallas to enjoy cultural experiences,” said Julie Farmer of Horseshoe Bay Cultural Enrichment. “People want those events and activities that inspire them and cause them to think.”

Horseshoe Bay Cultural Enrichment aims to offer these types of events in the Highland Lakes, and it’s starting off with a performance by singer-songwriter John Arthur Martinez “as you’ve never heard him before.”

Martinez, a native son of the Highland Lakes, is well-known for his music that draws from honky-tonk, traditional country, Tejano, and more.

But this show will be much different.

“This is a very different aspect of John Arthur,” Farmer said. “He’s performing several of his own songs with the Centralis String Quartet, but it’s not like you think when you first think of (Martinez).”

Martinez and local conductor and music producer Robert Linder put their heads together to come up with a new way for people to experience Martinez’s music. Farmer said the two worked together to find the right arrangement for six songs off Martinez’s latest CD, “San Antonio Woman.” Each of the six songs has a special meaning to Martinez, and a story behind it.

The Centralis String Quartet of Houston will join Martinez on stage during this incredible event.

“It’s going to be a powerfully emotional show,” Farmer said.

The performance is 4:30 p.m. Saturday, May 12, at Quail Point Lodge, 107 Twilight Lane. Tickets are $35 and available online at or by sending a check to HSB Cultural Enrichment, P.O. Box 7654, Horseshoe Bay, TX 78657.

At least two more Horseshoe Bay Cultural Enrichment events are planned in 2018. On Oct. 28, the Austin Jazz Band, an 18-piece big band featuring singer Lisa Clark, will perform during “Night at the Pump Room.” On Nov. 29, David Threadgill, director of the Texas A&M Institute for Genome Sciences and Society, will give an entertaining talk on genetics.

One thing the cultural organization strives to do is bring a blend of fine arts, sciences, and relevant topics to the community.

“We’re learning what people want,” Farmer said. “We can bring great cultural enrichment experiences here.”

Those experiences do more than give a person something to do for an hour or two; they can inspire people, challenge their way of thinking, and open them up to different perspectives.

“It’s about staying alert, knowing what’s going on in the world around and beyond you, and being inspired,” Farmer added. “Have you ever watched a movie that hits you emotionally and changes you? I think people naturally want to have those experiences, and that’s one of the things (Horseshoe Bay Cultural Enrichment) is trying to do: bring in those types of experiences and programs.”

While the Highland Lakes has several arts- and education-related programs that bring in events and activities, Farmer said Horseshoe Bay Cultural Enrichment isn’t looking to supplant those efforts.

“We want to collaborate to bring in cultural enrichment opportunities,” she said. “It’s something everyone can benefit from.”

Go to for more information and event tickets.

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