People might remember Victoria Azevedo as a contestant from the first season of CTV’s “The Launch”. While the community at The Etobicoke School of the Arts, know her as a grade 11 student. Either way, they will soon know her as Ria, as she embarks on her professional musical career as an artist recently signed to MDC Music in association with Arrival Music Group.
A Toronto native and of Portuguese descent, her parents and her 11 year old brother Nicholas, know Victoria as a fearless and feisty daughter and sister.
Ria is grateful to her mom, that at the young age of 4, “I wanted to dance really bad, so my mom put me in dancing classes for a year and a half and I hated it, but I would dance and sing around the house. So, my mom put me in singing classes instead and I just loved it.”
Realizing that life experience and being well rounded add to the music, she is anchored in who she is and being true to that. “Be true to yourself and don’t let anyone change you just because they don’t like what you are doing. I think uniqueness is amazing especially in this generation. Bring out what’s different because that’s the whole point. If we were all the same, life would be boring.”
She understood very early that her passion for music grew stronger each time she entered contests and performed. “The first time I went up on stage (at age 7), even though I was scared, I knew I wanted to go up again.”
I had a chance to interview Ria, here is what she had to say:
1. Let’s start off by getting to know you. Tell me a little about yourself?
A) Hi I’m Ria. I live in Toronto with my parents and my younger brother Nicholas. I’m a Pop and R&B artist. My debut single, “I’m Good” is on all streaming platforms. I love drawing and watching movies. My favourite one is “Scent of a Woman.” And I love being around people.
2. You recently released your new single “I’m Good”, can you tell me about the song and the purpose behind it?
- My debut single, “I’m Good” is about dealing with negative friendships in your life and how to get through them. Once you let go of them, you realize that you are better off without them. This song really hits me on a personal level, because it addresses the issues I’ve had with friends. The song means a lot to me, and hopefully if any of my fans are going through this, they know that they aren’t alone.
3. You appeared on the first season of CTV’s THE LAUNCH, how was that
- The experience at The Launch taught me to believe in myself and follow through with my dreams. It gave me knowledge about the music industry, which I take with me now. It was a great experience. I had a lot of fun and met a lot of nice people. The fact that my mentor was Boy George, was insane. He is literally an icon, so it was amazing for me to have the opportunity to perform in front of him. Boy George was super nice with great energy. It helped me to understand myself more, musically and all the advice from all of these great mentors has helped me to push myself more.
4. How did you get into music? And how did you know this is what you wanted to do as a career?
- After dancing didn’t work out, I decided to take vocal lessons at age 7. After my first lesson, I was so fascinated by singing and everything you need to do with your voice that it made me not want to do anything else. Then when I was 11 my dad entered me in a vocal contest and I came in first (after trying twice). The prize was recording in a studio. I was super excited and I got a taste of what it would be like to be an artist. It taught me that it was the only thing that I could see myself doing and I fell in love with every part of music.
5. You recently signed with Arrival Music Group and are currently recording your debut EP, can you tell me about that?
- It’s awesome working with Arrival Music Group because they are like family to me and I can just be myself. Because of that, things are creatively flowing. My producer a.n.g.e.l and I always have a conversation before writing and recording in the studio. We’ve spent a lot of time creating a theme for the EP and the songs are all related to things that I’ve been through and teenagers my age have also gone through, whether it’s mental health, friendships or dating relationships. My producer and I are very specific about what we want, and musically very similar in the melodies that we like and the way we interpret things, so it makes it really easy for me to record with him. I’ve learned to trust the process and go with the flow.
6. Who are some of your musical influences?
- Daniel Caesar because he is bringing back some of the old style R&B that I respect so much. Ariana Grande because I love how she combines pop with R&B and I love her voice. She has so much passion when she sings and she’s an overall great performer who inspires me to be better as an artist.
7. If you could collaborate with anyone, who would it be?
- Bono and U2 because it was my very first band that I ever loved. Throughout the years they’ve been so consistent, and the fact that they are still playing… I just have so much respect for that and their music.
8. Is there anything else you would like to add or share with us?
- Thank you so much for getting to know a little bit more about me. Don’t forget to check out my single, “I’m Good” on all streaming platforms and stay tuned for more new music. Much love.