Ask the adventurous singer-songwriter Alejandra Ribera about the influences behind her new album This Island, and she'll talk about a speech by actress Tilda Swinton at the Rothko Chapel in Houston, or studying movement in Paris with one of Pina Bausch's earliest devotees. We've learned to expect the unexpected from the multilingual artist whose folk music is exotic but universal. In advance of her concert next week at Trinity-St. Paul's, we asked Ribera about her current passions.
What she's reading:
"I'm just finishing Walk Through Walls, a memoir by the performance artist Marina Abramovic. The story of her life and her development as an artist is so extraordinary and surprising – it's truly stranger than fiction. I haven't been able to put it down and I find it really inspiring."
What she's watching:
My best friend recommended that I watch HBO's The Young Pope, and from the moment I started I was completely hooked. It's directed by Paolo Sorrentino and probably the most visually nourishing television series I've ever watched. It's set in the Vatican and revolves around this rather strange new Pope and the day-to-day politics that take place."
What she's listening to:
"We've been spending a lot of time on the road lately, so I've been going back to classic records that I love that really groove. The Miseducation of Lauryn Hill is the one I've been listening to on a loop the past few weeks. From the songs to the production, and the harmonies and just the way the way the whole things flows – to me this is a perfect album I always come back to."
Alejandra Ribera plays Trinity-St.Paul's Centre on March 15, 8 p.m. $39.50. 427 Bloor St. W., 416-872-4255 or https://www.masseyhall.com/tickets/current/2017/march/alejandra-ribera.