And now what?


After 9 years of jumping from one degree to the other, from one University to another, I finally decided to pull the plug. Yes, I could have had a few more academic years in front of me (master, doctoral…), but with three degrees in my pocket I think it was about time to just give it a rest. I always believed I should stay in school for as long as there are ladders to climb, never trusting that I was ready to face the real world before that. After 9 years of doing so, this is what I came to realize: I was soooo wrong!

That idea only brought me insecurity, for I learned to rely on school in order to feel appreciated and valued. Until the day I didn’t anymore. I began to feel blocked, to lose confidence and to even begin losing interest in what always interested me the most. I was always stronger in myself, and that also decreased significantly over time. I lost track of my ideals and even of what I really want. I jumped from one opinion to another as if that was my only truth. But what about me? I mean, really. I felt so invisible sometimes or, even worse, a walking-burden going around the school’s corridors. Although I naturally improved in my singing along the years, I don’t think this was because of being in school. In fact, I believe that I would have improved even more if I was outside doing mistakes and facing my own struggles. Of course the vocal guidance I had, and will continue to have, was a great part of my improvement, but I could, and I will, do it at my own pace and will now, away from the school as an institution itself. Regrets aside, this all contributed to who I am today, and while working on regaining the trust I’ve lost, I am sure it was as it should have been.

The real question now is: what’s next?

Now that I’m finally stepping out into the wild with all that I have to give, where do I turn first? Fortunately, there are still viable paths to follow, but which is the one for me? My path has never been straightforward. If I decide one way, I end up on the other. ALL THE TIME! Well, at least it’s never boring. It just makes everything much more complicated in the decision-making process.

The great thing about being a singer is not only the pleasure it brings, but also that it is very versatile. This is what I love the most about it, for I need to keep doing new things. The possibilities are diverse: teach music, apply for professional choirs, do your own recital programs (my personal favorite), travel around for competitions, sing at specific social events, go on to an opera company, etc. Most of us, end up combining some of these and earn sufficiently to pay the bills, others will only follow one of these paths and probably be quite successful in doing so.

Deep down I know I want to combine a bit of everything. It’s not that I have such an idea of myself that I think I can do it all. I wish I did. But still, in the short range of possibilities at my reach, there’s so much I can try. This is where the real problem begins. When you have a clear path from the beginning, it can be easier deciding which way to go first. It usually follows a certain order. When, as in my case, you can’t decide where to go first, it’s easy to feel blocked and just stop. Plus, after so many years closed behind doors, only popping out now and then for an audition or so, it is natural that reentering the real world becomes harder. People that might have known you before, while you were in your amateur years, moved on to other singers who were out there in the world while you were not. You end up falling into oblivion back where everything started. Having said so, I now realize that to stop performing in order to focus on the learning process is really not the way. Not that anyone really forced this idea on me, I blame this on myself.

Contrarily to what I was always told to do in this profession, I never wanted to become the best in what I do. I want to become the best that I can be, in the best way for me, i.e. without losing my sanity. Of course I want recognition, but so does any interested professional in his work. Recognition is what gives continuity to a career. My ambition is to be able to sing my heart out (something I rarely could do in a school’s environment) while being paid for it. If it is something that I believe in, that’s more than enough for me.

Now the real struggle begins, with better days than others, but I still believe that in the midst of all this I’ll be true to myself. Paths will intertwine, close down and reappear. Let them come, let the game begin!


Ópera Garnier – Paris


Arco-íris de flores



Arco-íris de flores

estendido pelos campos outrora inertes,

assim pelo Sol pintado

como uma espécie de auto-retrato.

Mesmo longe dos sentidos me apaziguas.

Trazes de novo vida a toda esta existência.

Fica e não desvaneças,

perfumado Arco-íris.


The end of Hibernation season


It is delightful to live a sunny and warmer day in the Hague. Not only the birds revel, but also the dutch. Even though it is slightly over 14º, everyone emerges from their caves towards the sunny parks. The entire city is experienced under a very different light and it is quite impossible not to carry a smile wherever you go.

Having to cycle a long distance yesterday, I decided to enjoy the beautiful day while doing it. Instead of rushing, I took my time, stopped and really absorbed the pleasant atmosphere. Everything gained a more vivid colour, contrasting to the grayish days we normally have.




The Peace Palace



I really felt that I’ve been on hibernation season until now. For quite some time I hadn’t felt this alive. I’m not saying that I’ve been living in misery, for that’s absolutely not the case. I’m very happy here, even if some days are hard to cope with, because of the lack of sun. But still, when a day like this comes along I feel like myself again, I feel that I rediscover what life means to me all over again.

I know this may sound a bit lame, but it is indeed magical. As I was cycling on my way back, my mind burst with ideas and real motivation to follow them. My brain, as well as my body, began to wake up and I couldn’t help but realize how happy I am, how far I’ve come and how I’m finally getting closer to the person I never trusted to be. I feel that it’s about time to put myself out there, facing insecurities and accepting that they’ll always be there, popping into my head from time to time. I can’t wait for them to disappear for good, in order to move forward. They may put me down, but they also keep me real and grounded, by giving me strength to fight them over. I’ll simply change the way they affect me and use them for my own benefit.


I’m glad I lived yesterday, lived it with and for myself, for today it is raining again!



I took holidays from the world


I took holidays from the world
from the world other than my own.
I chose to be free for a while
and enjoy this peace so worthwhile.

With nothing to prove,
no explanations to give,
I’ve freed my mind from this lie that I’ve lived.

This lie about myself, about my weak-self.

Far from unsolicited opinions,
far from the outside expectations,
I grew and began to find myself again.
This confident and target focused person that I really am.

Different talks in new surroundings,
new-found connections to feel free with.
A companionship to last a life time
and a deeper love for being me.

Yes, I’m coming back, holidays are over!
Not the same, not changed,
just myself, wiser and older.


Let the wall fall


At every sunrise, Judgment awaits.
It never sleeps.
It never stops trying to hide
in the darkest corners of the heart.

No words need to be uttered
for It to leave a mark.
A look, a distance,
a silence is more than enough.

By one’s Happiness It is triggered,
for it leaves Them on a string.
A string made of fear
that grows stronger
at every rushed heart beat.

Let that wall fall, let it be extinct!
No defense is needed against a happy heart.
Let it breath and sigh.
Let it be free to smile.
Or is it really that hard?



The birth of the Phoenix


After the most epic Summer of break-ups here in Den Haag (notice the How I met your mother’s reference) and the ridiculously grey cloud that hung on my head for weeks, I can finally say that I’m back, cloud-free and with more strength than my body can actually handle!

Life follows its own path, and I’m letting it happen, instead of trying to redirected it all the time. Every time I try to do it I only end up postponing the unavoidable! Life strikes when you least expect it and there’s no point in trying to over-analyze it, specially not for peer pressure.

It’s when I hit the bottom that I actually realize how lucky I am, for I become more aware of the good things and people I have in my life. There’s not enough retribution for the good friends that didn’t let me stay down (even when I’m literally down on the ground of my closet for hours!) or forget who I am. These moments always teach me something, they remind me of who I am and of what I really want for myself. If for a time I lose self-confidence, when I regain it again, it is stronger and on a upper level, specially by realizing how strong I can be.

In a way we function by triggers, and if some throw us down in the gutter, others surprise us, even scary us, for their positive outcome. They open new possibilities in a, many times, unexpected way. It was such a trigger that helped me find myself and my own path again.

I missed this feeling of reaching the end of the day tired as hell, after a productive day of work. I may be going home quite bumpy on my Julieta most of these days, but gosh it feels good! I’ve been so immersed in my studies again that I end up skipping lessons for spending hours at the library or simply because I can’t spare any of my practice time. I’d forgotten how I love to work, how I love to spend hours surrounded by books and just lose myself in translations and research. I’d forgotten who I am musically, while trying to focus on my limitations. It’s about time I begin to acknowledge what I already do well and show it to the world.


The Fear


All the words left unsaid
All the paths we didn’t take,
Held by the fear of going beyond ourselves,
Weight still on my heart.

Fearing the rejection, I rejected
Wanting to seem cool, I grew apart.
My fears tricked me and ran free
Leaving me in this meaningless swirl of life.

(This dangerous illusion that we call comfort
Keeps us captive in a unrealistic nest.
A nest so pleasant and so simple,
that makes us give up on all the rest.

It constantly pulls us in
As we strive into the real world.
It makes us doubt and resist
More than we really would.)

How can a moment define so much?
How can it effortlessly throw us apart?
After all the struggle, all the doors that cracked open,
Just waiting for time and trust to knock them down.

How can fear win over our hearts?