Paula Sides was born in Cookeville, Tennessee, graduating with honours in music from Columbus State University. She studied on the opera course at the Royal College of Music, where she received the Tagor Gold Medal. Other prizes included the Karaviotis Prize at the Les Azuriales International Competition, the Coutts & Co. Award and the Sir Thomas Allen Scholarship, supported by a Clayton Award.
Operatic roles include title role/Tosca, Lauretta/Gianni Schicchi, Pamina/The Magic Flute, Atalanta/Xerxes, Clizia/Teseo, Emilia/Flavio, Susanna/Le nozze di Figaro (English Touring Opera); Norina/Don Pasquale, Gilda/Rigoletto (Preggio Opera Festival, Italy); title role/Atalanta (Handel Society); Bastienne/Bastien und Bastienne (Skipton Camerata); Mimi/La bohème, Inez/Il Trovatore (Opus 1 Opera); Grasshopper/The Cunning Little Vixen (RCM). Covers include Governess/Turn of the Screw (Opera North); Ginevra/Ariodante, Servilia/La clemenza di Tito (ETO).
Concert engagements include Ralph Vaughan Williams’ 7th Symphony for Opera North and the Stavanger Symphony Orchestra under the baton of Richard Farnes, Mozart Unwrapped (King’s Place with Roger Vignoles), City of Dreams (Philharmonia Orchestra concert series, Exultate Jubilate and Messiah with the Skipton Camerata, the Mozart Requiem for Thames Philharmonic Choir, the Vivaldi Gloria in St. Martin-in-the-Fields, the Rossini Stabat Mater for Putney Choral Society, the Brahms Requiem, Elijah for the RCM, and Carmina Burana with the London Gala Orchestra. Paula has also recorded a soundtrack for a Peroni advertisement on TV and cinemas.