ENA MARIA ALDECOA

  Professor, Piano and Keyboard Department
  College of Music, University of the Philippines, Diliman

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  • Ena Maria Aldecoa was born in Naga City, Bikol Province, in the Philippines. She was educated already at a very early age by her father in music theory, solfège, guitar and violin before she started her formal studies in piano and voice.

    After finishing her Bachelor of Arts degree in English with magna cum laude and her Bachelor of Music in Piano with cum laude under Sr. Ester B. Peña, D.C. at the Universidad de Sta. Isabel she pursued graduate studies in piano under Prof. Nita A. Quinto at the University of the Philippines.

    Subsequently she took Voice for two semesters fulfilling her academic load requirement for a scholarship. These two semesters then extended into many years of serious graduate studies in Voice under Prof. Elmo Q. Makil and Prof. Ma. Cecilia O. Valeña. After finishing her Master of Music degree in Piano she was appointed in 1997 to teach at the Keyboard Department of the College of Music.

    Fate had it that she played for almost all voice literature classes confronting her with the wide scope of art songs and culminated in her Master of Music degree in Voice in 2004.

    From 2003 to 2006 she served as rehearsal master of the University of the Philippines Concert Chorus and led the male ensemble to win the first prize in the Concorso Internationale di Canto Corale "SEGHIZZI" in Gorizia in 2006.


From 2008 until 2010 she was a member of the Philippine Madrigal Singers performing in over one hundred concerts on four continents.

Her solo engagements started in 2003 with the JeugdOrkest Nederland at the Aberdeen International Youth Festival, and then in 2006 with the Philippine Philharmonic Orchestra.

In 2011 she was the only applicant from Asia to be granted a voice scholarship by the KAAD. In 2013 she received a scholarship by the Albertus-Magnus- und Hildegardis-Verein (Studienstiftung der Erzdiözese Freiburg).

In 2010 her international singing career increased while studying under Prof. Mitsuko Shirai and Prof. Hartmut Höll when she was invited by Maestro Mario Venzago to sing the part of Marie in Alban Berg’s „Drei Bruchstücke für Gesang und Orchester“ from the opera „Wozzeck“ at the Konzerthaus in Karlsruhe.

Some of the other conductors she was working with were Jurjen Hempel, Ruggero Barbieri, Hans-Georg Dechange, Gérard Buquet, Philippe Cambreling and Johannes Blomenkamp.

In her many solo engagements she was accompanied by L’Orchestra Sinfonica Gaetano Donizetti (Bergamo), Kammerphilharmonie Rhein-Main, Orchestra Filarmonica Italiana (Bergamo), Orchestra Sinfonica Giuseppe Verdi (Milano), Orchestra Agimus Arte (Firenze), the Ensemble für Neue Musik der Hochschule für Musik Karlsruhe (Nancy) and the Karlsruher Barockorchester.

Living European composers like Wolfgang Rihm, Olga Neuwirth and Heinz Holliger were especially enthralled by her range of voice, phenomenal breath control that culminates in levitating suspense, precision of pitch even with difficult intervals, depth of interpretation and her tremendous charisma on stage.

Since October 2014 she has again taken up her professorship in the keyboard department at the College of Music of the University of the Philippines and since June 2015 she is additionally artistic director in the newly founded Art Song Academy Manila.