Carlos Vargas has given performances throughout the United States, South America, and Europe, in venues such as Teatro El Circulo (Argentina), Teatro Mayor Julio Mario Santodomingo (Colombia), Sala Eduardo Brito (Dominican Republic), and Wiener Saal (Austria), among others. A native of the Dominican Republic, Vargas began his studies at a young age with renowned Cuban pianist and pedagogue Karelia Escalante. He was an active participant in and winner of national and international competitions, including the Manuel Rueda award in 2005 in the Dominican Republic's Festival of Latin American Music, third prize in the Steinway Society of Massachusetts competition, second prize in the Churchill Scholarship competition, and second prize in the Bradshaw & Buono International Piano Competition. Vargas has a particular interest in developing programs that facilitate musical education for the underprivileged. A 2008 grant from the Boston Public Library allowed him to create a piano program through which dozens of children are able to receive free lessons in piano and theory up to this date. In the year 2019, Mr. Vargas was awarded the Berklee Urban Service Award for his commitment to this initiative and the impact he has achieved in the Boston Community.
In 2012, Vargas co-founded (with Colombian violinist José Romero) the Macondo Chamber Players, an organization that brings together established and emerging artists from Latin America and the world to perform chamber music, teach young people, and encourage international understanding. Since its creation, the group has given tours in the Dominican Republic, Colombia, Ecuador, Mexico, and Turkey, receiving praise from both audiences and the press. Awarded the Zitrin scholarship in 2005, Vargas completed both his B.M. and M.M. at Boston Conservatory under the guidance of Jonathan Bass.
Mr. Vargas is also the Young Artist program director of the Esmeraldas International Music Festival (FIME), a full scholarship program that brings world renowned artists to work alongside young artists from South America. Since its conception, FIME has been able to facilitate access to students from this region to professors from prestigious universities in the United States, most of them receiving full scholarships to continue their studies. Because of its impact, the Festival has been praised by artists such as Yo- Yo Ma, Mischa Maisky, Martha Argerich and Michel Camilo.
Mr. Vargas resides in Boston where he serves as a faculty member of the Boston Conservatory at Berklee.