Gena Perala grew up spending much of her childhood traveling with her family on the carnival circuit. Perhaps this explains her astute lyrical insight into human nature and the world around us. Her lyrics, her voice and her willingness to bare all, create an atmosphere of poignancy and revelation. She was once described as “Jewel meets Peaches,” which is a pretty good description.
Gena started by performing in the Vancouver Poetry Slam before bringing her love of writing and her love of singing together. Her dad bought her a guitar; she muddled her way through it and soon wrote her first song, “Restless by Nature” (This ain’t pretty, 2008). She has since performed for the United Nations, on the PNE Main Stage, at the Stanley Theater, up the East Coast and all over Vancouver. She was cast as herself in a feature film entitled “Love Happens,” starring Jennifer Aniston and Aaron Eckhart and was the winner of the Rock the Vote audio contest, winning $1500.00 for her poem expressing the importance of voting. Most recently one of Gena’s songs can be found in an independent feature film “Me, my mom and a whistle.”
Gena Perala also works with the youth in her community, hired to facilitate poetry and music workshops within Surrey Juvenile Correctional facilities as well as within Vancouver’s School District. The guardians of the Correctional facility said they had never seen the boys (aged 13-17) so respectful and so engaged with any facilitator, ever.
Gena has published three books of poetry, “I’m a Worst Case Scenario Type of Girl”(2003), “Clean Getaway”(2005) and “Better Sorry than Safe”(2011). She has released two solo albums “This Ain’t Pretty”(2008) and most recently, a real labor of love, “Exactly Nowhere”(2013).
Gena also plays with a band called Tomgirl – You can hear them here: https://soundcloud.com/tomgirl