In 2011, Sto. Domingo Music Learning Center gives free voice lessons to underprivileged kids. In fact, it was featured at GMA 7’s Good News of Vicky Morales entitled, “Mga batang mahihirap nabigyan ng libreng voice lessons”.
The music center was owned by Lilibeth Sto. Domingo or more popularly known as “Coach Beth”. Unfortunately, Coach Beth’s business was one of the many businesses who were affected by the COVID-19 pandemic and the seemingly endless quarantine restrictions in the country. After 11 years , she decided to close her Music Center in Montalban, Rizal as gatherings and events were also suspended. (Read: Exclusive: Sulok Cafe’s Owners Share How They Bounced Backed After Closing Shop)
Love for music
Coach Beth has always loved music and singing even before her high school days.
“I always join the amateur singing contests. Then I met Doc Erik who gave me formal singing lessons, so I enjoyed singing and music more,” says Coach Lilibeth, who has been a professional vocal coach for 11 years.
She became a Vocal Technique Coach after training with Doc Erik Cruz III, a veterinarian who owns the Sing! Vocal Power Institute, in 1997 to 2000. She oversaw the operations of his newly opened music studio in Cainta.
“He patiently taught me the fundamentals and recording and professional singing. Aside from that, I also attended many seminars, especially at FILSCAP to enhance his composing. That’s also where I met a lot of amateur and professional singers,” she shares.
After two years of working with salary, she worked at Wasmiya Korean Agency for six months, then at the Voice Academy and Perfect Harmony as a vocal coach.
Her own music center
In 2008, Coach Beth and her husband decided to teach temporarily in her house because they have five students that time using only one karaoke and five chairs. (Read: Filipino Church Choir Bags Top Prize at World Competition)
After a month, Coach Beth had 10 additional students, so they decided to rent a small, commercialized place in Marikina City near her home. Then she registered the business at the Department of Trade and Industry and secured her business permit and named it as Sto. Domingo Music Learning Center.
“That’s when I started holding yearly recitals and mall shows to expose the kids, help them overcome their stage fright, and develop their self-confidence in facing the big crowd,” says Coach Beth.
“Since then, I received a lot of inquiries from different places, especially in Montalban Rizal so we decided to open another branch there in October 2011,” shares Coach Beth. Apart from basic, advance, and recording level voice lessons, Coach Beth also offers guitar, piano, and ukulele lessons. (Read: 3 Fun Learning Apps You Should Be Downloading Right Now)
Her most challenging student was a 16-year-old boy who had cerebral palsy, but he was able to complete the basic level of singing and join the recital. She also handled some celebrities including Zoren Legaspi and Brando Legaspi, Artists Teen Quest Grand Winner Jana Francine Taladro, GMA artist Haily Mendez, Daniella Eirene Ronimo, The Voice Kids Alexa Salcedo.
What’s next for Coach Beth?
Before delving in music, Coach Beth finished Culinary Arts course at the Marikina Institute of Science and Technology in 1994, but due to the steep competition of putting up a food business, she decided to pursue her first love – music.
“Back in the days, it’s already difficult to open a catering or carinderia business, more so now due to the uncertainty of the situation and people have more choices. These days, I live stream, bake cookies and sushi (P500), and cook Everlasting (P160/tub) on a per order basis at Jirehs Casa De Comida Facebook page. Thank God we can still eat every day,” she admits.
Coach Beth is the sole provider for her four kids: Lance, 20; Angela, 17, Catherine, 16, and Jireh, 14, as her husband of 26 years cannot work anymore after suffering from a stroke. She also tried teaching online voice and music lessons, but getting enrollees was also a struggle.
If you wish to be trained by a professional voice coach while in quarantine, you can message Lilibeth Salanon Sto. Domingo directly via Facebook, landline: (028) 7211603, or mobile phone: 09617178965.