Cagayan de Oro-based music teacher reaches WorldVision final

CAGAYAN DE ORO CITY, Philippines – The Conservatory of Music, Drama and Dance at Liceo de Cagayan University, based in Cagayan de Oro, continued to reap top honors on the international classical music scene as its associate dean is qualified for the final of the WorldVision Composers 2022 Competition.

The competition seeks to find the most talented contemporary classical composers in the world.

Professor Horst Hans Bäcker, Associate Dean of the Conservatory, made the shortlist of the 88 best composers in the world and went on to qualify for the final along with two others – Rod Schejtman from Argentina and Claudio H. Martinez Garcia from Mexico .

The winner will be announced on September 18 and the winning piece will be performed by the Symphony Nova Orchestra Wien at the final gala concert of the WorldVision Music Contest at the Vienna Konzerthaus.

In the first round where composers were given free choice of genre and form for an instrumental composition, Bäcker was selected on October 4, 2021, as one of the top qualified composers for the second round with his Banaue Rhapsody.

In the second round of the competition where composers were invited to submit a piece of chamber music for any number of instruments up to 12, he was again voted best composer in November 2021 and qualified for the half- finals with her entry F͚ür Sophie.

Composers were then invited to submit a piece for a symphony orchestra, and Bäcker successfully passed this with his composition Fantasia for Orchestra, emerging on May 20 as one of the top three composers to qualify for the final.

Born in Bucharest, Bäcker took his first piano lessons at the age of five and then studied composition from 1981 with Professor Ludwig Werner Weiand at the Wuppertal Conservatory in Germany.

He studied under famous names such as Nikolaus Harnoncourt, Jürg Baur and Jorma Panula.

Since earning his master’s degree at the Cologne College of Music, Bäcker has been commissioned to compose music by musicians and chamber ensembles all over the world.

His compositions have been performed all over Europe and his CD recordings have been appreciated all over the world.

Besides his compositions, Bäcker delighted audiences with his choir and symphony orchestra featuring the works of famous bands like the Beatles, Queen, Deep Purple, Led Zeppelin, Rolling Stones and Supertramp.

Bäcker co-founded the Cagayan de Oro Symphony Orchestra in 2018 and has been its conductor ever since.

He has been living in Cagayan de Oro City since 2016. He is a Professor of Composition and Orchestral/Choir Conducting and Associate Dean of the Liceo Conservatory.

Multi-award winning Conservatory faculty

Filipino staff at the Conservatory have also reaped awards and recognition for their work. In the past five years, two of them have won three Ani ng Dangal (Harvest of Honors) of the National Commission for Culture and the Arts (NCCA). The award is given to Filipino artists of natural origin who have won the highest honors at international events for architecture and related arts, film, dance, drama, literary arts, music and arts. visual arts.

Cipriano “Zip” de Guzman Jr., who teaches voice and acting, won first prize at the American Protégé International Vocal Competition, at Weill Recital Hall, Carnegie Hall in New York in December 2016.

This was followed by another first prize in the open professional category at the 17th Rome International Music Competition, Grand Prix Virtuoso at Parco Della Musica in Rome, Italy in December 2018.

SPEAKING. Tullio Vidmar, Cipriano de Guzman Jr. and Nino Cesar Tiro from the Conservatory of Music, Drama and Dance at Liceo University of Cagayan also paid tribute to the Cagayan de Oro-based educational institution. (Photo courtesy of Cipriano de Guzman Jr.)

Dubbed “The Filipino Baritone”, De Guzman made waves in Japan in 2016 when he won second prize at the 10th Yokohama International Music Competition at the Gotanda Cultural Center in Tokyo. He then won special prizes at the 8th Tokyo International Music Competition and the Osaka International Music Competition.

Another faculty member, Nino Cesar Tiro, received similar recognition for his piano composition Phantasie for Ludwig which was included in concert pianist Susanne Kessel’s 250 piano pieces for the International Beethoven Composition Project 2020. Tiro currently teaches piano music/composition at the Conservatory where he is also Academic Director.

The Liceo College of Music leads by example – no less than its Dean, Rudolf Caesar Pelaez Golez, was the sole winner of the 1st ASEAN International Chopin Piano Competition held in Kuala Lumpur in 2004.

Another non-Filipino member of the Conservatory faculty, Italian Tullio Vidmar, also brought honors and prestige to the Cagayan de Oro-based university.

Vidmar, the Conservatory’s research coordinator and violin teacher, co-wrote the soundtrack for the restored 1911 Italian silent film with Tiro Pinocchio during the 15th International Silent Film Festival presented by the Italian Association of the Philippines and the Italian Embassy in 2021.

The Italian violinist is the concertmaster and principal violinist of the Cagayan de Oro City Symphony Orchestra. Vidmar is a laureate of the Music Conservatory of Giuseppe Tartini di Trieste in Italy. –

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