Ester Andújar

Position
Assistant Professor

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Career Highlights

Ester Andujar has released three albums as a leader (Tristeza de Amar, Celebrating Cole Porter, and Páginas Preciosas) alternating versions of jazz standards, pop, and Brazilian music with her own compositions. She has toured extensively with her own band or as a backing vocalist throughout the Spanish and international cultural circuits including Argentina, Cuba, Poland, France, Morocco, Romania, and Jordan. Her second release, Celebrating Cole Porter, was recorded in New York with musicians like Ben Street, Helen Sung, Rob Bargad, and Peter Bernstein, and was highly rated by critics and specialized press. Scherzo magazine dedicated an article to her: ''Ester Andújar: Prophet in Her Own Land'' (No. 244, September 2009). Celebrating Cole Porter was presented at the annual conference of the IAJE (International Association of Jazz Educators) in New York with Dave Schnniter a special guest artist.

Andujar composes and arranges (together with Arantxa Domínguez), the music for the project Suite Nivola, a programmatic concert in tribute to the novel Niebla by Miguel de Unamuno. Presentation at the Jazz Festival of the Polytechnic University Valencia and the Cultural Centre La Beneficència.

She is currently composing songs for her new album, performing with her band at local jazz venues, and collaborating with AGR Nonet as a guest artist with Perico Sambeat.

 

 

Awards
  • Best Vocalist Award,  Black Note '95 contest in Valencia (1995).
  • Best Voice Award, Valencian Association of Jazz and Creative Music (Promúsics, 2001).
  • Album Tristeza de Amar highlighted by Todas las Novedades as one of the Five Best Spanish Jazz Albums of 2002;  it has also been nominated for Best Album in the II Edition of the Valencian Jazz Promúsics Awards 2002, and highlighted in the magazine Cuadernos de Jazz (No. 76) with a rating of four stars.
  • Finalist in the 7th International Soloist Competition in Monaco, organized by the Académie de Musique Fondation Prince Rainier III; and the first singer in the history of the competition.
  • Selected with her group for the 2005 Injuve Circuit, participating in the Jazz Festival of Getxo, Ibiza, Boadilla del Monte, and Lugo.
  • Finalist in the 3rd Shure Montreux Jazz Voice Competition, at the 39th Montreux Jazz Festival; awarded the Special Prize of the Jury President (Barbara Hendricks, member of honor: Randy Crawford).
  • Semifinalist in the 4th Shure Montreux Jazz Voice Competition" at the 40th Montreux Jazz Festival. President of the Jury: Al Jarreau.
  • Representative of her generation by Interviú magazine for its 30th anniversary celebration, under the epigraph "Triunfadores a los 30" (“Successful people at 30”).
  • Featured in Scherzo magazine for album Celebrating Cole Porter: ''Ester Andújar: Prophet in Her Own Land'' (No. 244, September 2009).
Education
  • Berklee College of Music (one semester).
  • Bachelor of Music at the Conservatory of Navarra, performance-jazz (academic certificate with three honors)
  • Valencian International University (VIU), master's degree in music performance and research; master's thesis: “The Jazz Voices. Applied Technical and Interpretative Resources
  • Voice studies in different styles (from jazz to classical) with Astrid Krone, Lidia Wellington, Carme Canela, Dovrat Levy, Alicia Merelo, Bob Stoloff, Christine Tobin, Sheila Jordan, Miles Griffith, and Amadeo Lloris.
  • Estill Voice Training, completed three courses in vocal technique 
  • Attended jazz workshops, studying with masters such as Kurt Rosenwinkel, Mike Mossman, Horacio "El Negro" Hernandez, Arturo O'Farrill, Benny Golson, Yaron Stavi, and many others.
  • Piano lessons with Ricardo Belda
In Their Own Words

"I firmly believe in the idea that knowledge is synonymous with freedom and both concepts require a learning process. I try to instill in my students a love for that process, which includes the self-perception of the vocal instrument, the assimilation of theoretical concepts and their practice, and new musical challenges that awaken the student's curiosity and desire to improve. I also like to work on developing students' autonomy so that they can design their own study routine to improve their vocal technique as well as their artistry and musicianship."

"Berklee makes a difference in enabling this symbiosis between art and skills by providing students with the tools they need to explore their own talents and encouraging them to surpass themselves and push their limits far beyond."

"As a performer, I had the opportunity to develop different roles: leader of my own band, backing vocalist, guest singer in different bands (vocal groups, big bands, symphonic bands, small and big ensembles), performer, composer, and arranger. I have also worked as a voice teacher in different schools in the Valencian Community since 2000. Combining both facets throughout my career has allowed me to have a broad perspective of the teaching of singing and its multidisciplinary nature, an experience that I try to put at the disposal of students."