Having joined the ABS-CBN Philharmonic orchestra at 23, Franz Ramirez is the youngest principal musician in the orchestra. And it’s no wonder why he has such a position as Principal Oboist; he started playing music very early, picking up the recorder at four years old!
When asked “What advice would he give to a young musician?”, he answered, “Enjoy lang! As with everything in life, it’s important to enjoy.”
He tells us how he chose the Oboe as an instrument. “When I was thirteen years old, I was listening to a piece and heard an instrumental solo. I asked my dad what musical instrument was making the sound. He said it was the Oboe.” Since then Franz has fallen in love with the Oboe and, of course, has been mastering the many techniques required to be an Oboist, putting hours and hours into the instrument.
Despite his commitment to the Oboe, which is an instrument rarely used outside of the classical genre, Franz is no purist. His playlists found on his computer and sound system include The Beatles and several jazz artists. “I do still really enjoy listening to classical concertos and cantatas,” he says, a little shyly.
Though he hails from the UP College of Music, Franz also holds a diploma in Oboe Performance from the Associated Board of the Royal Schools of Music (ABRSM). He applied for the diploma and after setting up a small performance for them, they granted him a diploma “with distinction.” His performance so impressed the ABRSM that Franz was asked to guest in some concerts in Singapore. It is no surprise Franz has impressed an international crowd; in 2008 he competed in NAMCYA (National Music Competition for Young Artists) and won 1st prize for Oboe in his category.
Franz is happy to be part of the orchestra and looks forward to a promising career in music.
Here is a YouTube video of Franz playing at the International Bamboo Organ Festival in 2009: Click Here