And the hits just keep on coming!

For the third time in recent years, a faculty member of the Liceo Conservatory of Music, Theatre and Dance has brought home an Ani nga Dangal Award from the National Commission for Culture and the Arts (NCCA).

Niño Cesar Borromeo Tiro

Piano/Composition Music Faculty Niño Cesar Borromeo Tiro was awarded an Ani ng Dangal (Harvest of Honors)Award during the event’s 13th edition for his piano composition with the 250 piano pieces for Beethoven International Composition Project 2019, which brought pride and honor to the Philippines.

Tiro’s piano composition Phantasie für Ludwig was performed by concert pianist Susanne Kessel for Volume 9 of her global composition project 250 Piano Pieces for Beethoven.

He was the lone Filipino piano composer to be featured in the project that commemorates the 250th birthday of German composer and pianist Ludwig van Beethoven, widely regarded as one of the greatest geniuses in the history of Western music.


Tiro’s composition depicts the life and music of Beethoven, and was one of the most frequently featured pieces during the promotional tours and featured in the famous classical radio station WDR 3 in Germany. Three of his works are now part of eScholarship Contemporary Music Score Collection, which is an open access publishing platform subsidized by the University of California.

Also featured in Kessel’s global composition project was Fantasie über Ludwig van Beethoven by world-renowned composer/conductor Prof. Horst Hans Bäcker, associate dean of the Liceo Conservatory of Music, Theater and Dance.

Prof Horst Hans Backer and Maestro Niño Tiro present Mayor Oscar Moreno a copy of the 250 Piano Pieces for Beethoven.

Concurrently serving as an EdTech Specialist and Research and Community Extension Coordinator for Liceo Music Conservatory, Maestro Tiro is the second  Liceo Conservatory faculty to receive the prestigious award following Maestro Cipriano Zip de Guzman, Jr. in 2018 and 2019.

The Artist Niño Cesar Borromeo Tiro

A true-blue Kagay-anon, Tiro was born and raised in Cagayan de Oro and starting piano lessons when he was five.

Among his mentors were the late concert pianists and composer Lino Abrio and Anita Nita Velez Abrogar-Quinto.

Tiro was already flexing his musical chops even in school, graduating with High Honors in Bachelor of Music, Major in Music Education, Piano Principal at Lourdes College, and Magna Cum Laude at the Liceo de Cagayan University Conservatory of Music, Theater and Dance where he was mentored by world-renowned Composer/Conductor Prof. Horst-Hans Backer for his Bachelor of Music in Composition.

He is now a full-time faculty of the Liceo Conservatory and currently pursuing his Master of Music degree at the same institution, continuing his passion for teaching and making music.

Not confining himself to classical music, Tiro has indulged in an eclectic mix of music genres such as  rock, blues, and jazz. He plays electric bass as a professional session player in various local bands, and as the Principal Double Bass Player of the Cagayan de Oro Symphony Orchestra under the baton of conductor Horst Hans Backer.

He describes his music as anachronistic, eccentric, eclectic, and outright melodic. In 2004, his band’s song was a radio hit and was #1 for eight weeks on the local airwaves. He has also worked as an OFW in Guam as The Life Teen Music Director of Santa Barbara Catholic Church.

Ani ng Dangal (Harvest of Honors) is an organizational award given by the NCCA during an annual event celebrated as a highlight and concluding rite of the Philippine Arts Festival.

Now on its 13th year, the Ani ng Dangal recognizes Filipinos and Filipino works in the arts field who brought glory to the country in the past year. The awards are given for architecture and the allied arts, broadcast arts, cinema, dance, dramatic arts, literary arts, music and visual arts.

The Ani ng Dangal is given to those who garnered the top awards in legitimate festivals. The NCCA only recognizes competitions which have existed for not less than five years and which have adjudicators.

“I’m truly honored to be a recipient of the 13th Ani ng Dangal Award in Music. This is IT. This is a massive achievement. A milestone for me!,” Tiro wrote in a social media post.

“Thank you, friends, family, especially Ena Marie Tiro, for the never-ending support, love, and being my all-time number one fan. Nenette Tiro Antonio for being the talented extraordinary beta-tester of some of my works, Susanne Kessel for playing and believing in the power of my music and being the official musical ambassador of my little tribute to Ludwig, and Meister Horst-Hans Bäcker for guiding me and awakening my powers as a composer and musician, and to the Liceo de Cagayan University Conservatory of Music, Theater and Dance family for all the love and the support!”

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