Born in Madrid, María José Montiel studied Singing with Ana María Iriarte first and later with Sena Juriac and Olivera Miljakovic in Vienna. She has also studied Law at the Universidad Autónoma de Madrid, where she obtained as well a Diploma in Advanced Studies in Music History and Sciences. She has been awarded the Lucrecia Arana Prize, “Federico Romero” from SGAE, “Ojo Crítico” from Radio Nacional de España, and the CEOE Prize from the Coca Cola Foundation (Spain) to the best performer in 2001, among others.
She has performed at the most important stages around the globe, such as the Carnegie Hall in New York, Teatro alla Scala de Milan, Washington’s Kennedy Center, Pleyel Hall in Paris, Finland Hall in Helsinki, Musikverein, Konzerthaus and Staatsoper in Vienna, Sidney Town Hall, National Theater in Tokyo, Capitol de Tolouse and Teatro Real de Madrid. She has worked under the baton of prestigious international conductors like Riccardo Chailly, Sir Neville Marriner, Paul Decker, Vladimir Spivakov, Charles Dutoit or Jonathan Webb, among others, as well as the most notorious Spanish conductors. She has also sung with internationally renowned orchestras such as the Wiener Philkarmoniker, Orquestra National de France, Opera Orchestras from Sidney, Tokyo, Helsinki, Montreal, etc., as well as most Spanish orchestras.
She has shared the stage with well-known artists from the lyrical sphere, such as Montserrat Caballé, Alfredo Kraus or Plácido Domingo. The pianist Miguel Zanetti and she have performed many recitals around the world. The critics have considered her to be one of the best “Carmen’s” nowadays, covering her repertoire operas from Donizetti, Mozart, Offenbach, Verdi, Massenet, etc., as well as a wide range of symphonic repertoire with works from Mahler, Berlioz, Verdi, Vivaldi, Ravel, Rossini, Albéniz, Falla, Montsalvatge, García Abril, Bernaola, and more.
María José Montiel has recorded for labels like Dial, BIS, RTVE, Ensayo, Fundación Autor, Deutsche Grammophon, or Stradivarius. She was finalist at the Grammy Awarde in 2002 with her disc Modinha, and obtained a Golden DVD in 2005 for Madrileña Bonita.