New York Conductor Alondra de la Parra Takes Job in Mexico

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Alondra de la Parra, the New York-born conductor who made a splash by forming her own orchestra while barely in her mid 20s, has a new job, in Guadalajara, Mexico. De la Parra is the new artistic director of the Philharmonic Orchestra of Jalisco.

The 31-year-old de la Parra is best known for having founded in 2004 the Philharmonic Orchestra of the Americas, a New York freelance orchestra that showcased many Latino composers. The group performed at Lincoln Center and Town Hall, received heaps of media attention, and released a double-album, "Mi Alma Mexicana" (“My Mexican Soul”), for Sony Classical. 

But despite a charismatic presence on the podium, the POA also struggled. Last June, it announced it was suspending operations due to a lack of funds. De la Parra has been working as a guest conductor mainly outside of New York since.

In her new post, de la Parra will lead an orchestra in Mexico’s second-largest metropolitan region, after Mexico City. The POJ's roots date back to 1915, when it was known as the Guadalajara Symphonic Orchestra.

De la Parra was born in New York City in 1980 but raised mainly in Mexico City. She returned to New York in 2000 to study piano and conducting at the Manhattan School of Music, receiving her masters of music in 2008. She was married to Carlos Zedillo, the son of former Mexico President Ernesto Zedilla, from 2008 to 2010.