The University of the Philippines Singing Ambassadors (UPSA) is one of the Philippines' foremost choral groups. From its humble beginnings in 1980 at the Kalayaan Residence Hall, UPSA has gone a long way; earning for the country and for the University 8 Grand Prizes, 36 First Prizes, and other awards in 20 international choral competitions in ITALY, FRANCE, HUNGARY, GERMANY, SPAIN, BELGIUM, POLAND, the CZECH REPUBLIC, SLOVAKIA, BULGARIA, the NETHERLANDS, WALES, and SWITZERLAND.
Among other recognitions, the group prides itself to be the first Asian choir to win the Grand Prize in the Concorso Polifonico Internazionale Guido d'Arezzo in ITALY twice (in 2001 and 2018). Most memorable is the group's participation as Finalist in the European Grand Prix, the most coveted choral prize in the world, in 2002 and 2019. This achievement makes UPSA one of only five Filipino choirs to attain eligibility to contend in the Olympics of choral singing.
In their 2018 European Tour, the group garnered 3 Grand Prizes, 13 First Prizes, and other special awards from 4 different competitions in GERMANY, SPAIN, and ITALY. In 2009 and 2012, UPSA was awarded the Ani ng Dangal award by the National Commission on Culture and the Arts (NCCA) for "achieving the highest levels of artistic excellence and bringing honor to the country." Also, the group was elevated to the Hall of Fame of ALIW Awardees for having won the Best Choral Group Award 3 times. Costume designed by Renee Salud
25th Béla Bartók International Choir Competition and Folklore Festival, July 25-29, 2012 | Debrtecen, HUNGARY
Now on its 39th year, this amateur choir with professional aspirations and an international prominence finds fulfillment sharing its music to the less privileged who are constant recipients of their musical generosity. UPSA has shared Filipino culture through songs, customs, costumes of indigenous weaves, and dances in several goodwill performances in EUROPE, ASIA, AUSTRALIA, UAE, AFRICA, and the USA.
UPSA Conductor Dr. Ed Manguiat founded the group in 1980 as a freshman dormitory choir at the State University. He has studied under world-renowned choral musicians and trained under respected names in vocal pedagogy and choral conducting in the Philippines. He has also won various international conductor's awards in choral competitions.
Above Left: UPSA at The 14th European Grand Prix (EGP) for Choral Singing, Aug. 2002, Arezzo, ITALY Above Right: The American Church in Paris, FRANCE. The UPSA was invited to sing at the Special Ecumenical Service in memory of the victims of the Sept. 11 Twin Towers tragedy in New York. The specially invited congregation included French President Jacques Chirac, the Prime Minister, cabinet members, the diplomatic community and leaders of five monotheistic religions. Sept. 13, 2001. Gala Magazine, Sept. 20, 2001, Paris, FRANCE