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    Camila Parias hits a high note in Boston

    Joel Cohen/The Boston Camerata

    Age: 28

    Hometown: A Colombian native, Parias left Bogota for Boston about three years ago.

    Think of: A young Ella Fitzgerald singing “A-Tisket, A-Tasket,” because of the youthful color in her voice and the sunny sparkle in her delivery.


    What caught our eye: A winner of Bogota’s annual Opera al Parque Festival in 2009, Parias has been on the international classical radar for years, having performed in Canada with medieval music teacher and performer Benjamin Bagby, and throughout western Europe with Colombian chorus La Escala. Most people would be dizzied and jet-lagged, but Parias maintained momentum following her move to Boston, cofounding the chamber music ensemble, the Broken Consort, and capturing the attention of the music ensemble, the Boston Camerata.

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    Lightbulb moment: There was no single moment. “I have been singing since I was 4 years old. I was a part of choirs growing up. I never stopped singing.” In undergraduate workshops in vocal performance at the Pontificia Universidad Javeriana, Parias began to gravitate toward early classical music, and continued to perform and study the genre into her graduate education at Longy School of Music of Bard College.

    Biggest thrill: “The delivery. The connection you can have with audience and the message you’re giving to them. You are really exposing yourself and giving up a part of you when you’re singing.”

    Biggest surprise: The classical music scene in Boston has proven to be very receptive to the soprano since her relocation. “I feel like I have been blessed. I’ve been here for three years and I’ve found wonderful opportunities in the city to do my own projects and also be a part of groups, such as the Camerata, working with wonderful people.”

    Inspired by: Influential mentors include Argentine soprano Maria Cristina Kiehr; Anne Azéma, artistic director of the Boston Camerata; and her professor at Longy, Laurie Monahan.


    Aspires to: “Generally, I’d like to become [better] known in the scene, to go on more auditions I want to pursue here in Boston and in other cities. Long term, I’d love to have more of a soloist career and just keep singing.”

    For good luck: Though Parias doesn’t keep any charms or superstitions, she admits to being particular about her pre-performance routine. “I have my rituals. For example, I make sure I have what I need, my music in order, take time to make herbal tea — and I always have a banana.”

    What people should know: “I love cooking. It makes me think of my family back home. We love really good gourmet food. I consider myself very Colombian, and [in Colombia] I would have family around all the time. Boston has a great mix of people, and friends here have become like a family. But I miss warmth of Latin American people.”

    Coming soon: Parias will be performing in the Boston Camerata’s Sunday production of Carmina Burana. Following the performance, Parias will be setting off for a few weeks in Dallas before coming back to the East Coast for a performance of “Burgos, 1275” with the Broken Consort in New York City.


    Steph Hiltz can be reached at