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The Artist Pushing the Boundaries of Classical Music

Meet Stefa Marin Alarcón.

Photo: Shaniqwa Jarvis
Photo: Shaniqwa Jarvis

At first brush, Stefa Marin Alarcón is your average super talented, bubbly artist who wears fun colorful wigs and cool outfits on Instagram. The layers and moodiness reveal themselves when you listen to her music. Alarcón is a vocalist and performer who blends choral music with art pop and neo-soul sounds. Her music is conceptual, but it’s clear when you listen that her songs are super personal as well. “In my work, I question who gets deemed ‘classical’ and who doesn’t,” Alarcón told the Cut. “I’m definitely influenced by my Eurocentric classical training, whereas I wasn’t passed down all this music that was part of my lineage so I’ve had to look for it myself.” For her video performances, she plays a character who represents her “ancestors, myself, and the generations that will come after me.” We spoke with her about meditation as a superpower, vulnerability, and arepas.

What is your most used emoji? The alien.

If you could spend three months anywhere, where would it be? Where the mountains meet the ocean. It would be a space where I can make as much noise as I want or be as quiet as I want.

If you had a superpower, what would it be? I feel like meditation is almost a superpower. I wish I was really good at that and able to tune out the world.

What is the best album ever made? It hasn’t been written yet, because it’s mine that will come out later.

What’s your go-to karaoke song? “Zombie” by the Cranberries.

Who is someone you think is cool? All my friends are really cool. They’re trying earnestly to be the best people they can be and hold each other up.

What fictional character would you want to hang out with? Lauren, the main character from Octavia Butler’s Parable of the Sower.

If you were a magazine, which magazine would you be? A compilation zine of all my friends’ work and my work.

Jeans or sweats? Leggings.

What is something your social media followers don’t know about you? That it’s actually really hard for me to be vulnerable. I wish I was better at it.

What was the last website you looked at? Weather dot-com.

If you could be outfitted by one designer for the rest of your life, who would it be? I would make my own clothes and have someone help me cut and sew everything.

What do you eat for breakfast? Usually a banana and an iced green tea.

If you could only eat three things for the rest of your life, what would they be? A fresh bowl of fruit that was cut on the side of the road in Colombia and I’d eat that on my way to eat an arepa with cheese.

If you were a color, what color would you be? An iridescent color, like a pearl or an opal.

Photo: Shaniqwa Jarvis

Stefa wears Missoni pants, Messika bracelet, and Giuseppe Zanotti sandals.

The Artist Pushing the Boundaries of Classical Music