Ada Gentile was born in Avezzano, Italy (July 26, 1947). She studied at the Santa Cecilia Conservatory in Rome, and graduated with degrees in piano and composition. She went on to complete specialized studies in composition under Maestro Goffredo Petrassi at the Santa Cecilia National Academy.
She has won prizes at international competitions for composition, including the Gaudeamus Foundation Award (Amsterdam, 1982), as well as two I.S.C.M. Awards (Budapest, 1986, and Essen, 1995).
Her compositions have been played throughout Europe, the United States, Japan, Australia, Canada, and in Asia and South America, at major venues including the Pompidou Center in Paris, the Royal Theater of Madrid, the Centro de Arte Reina Sofia in Madrid, New York’s Metropolitan Opera, Carnegie Hall and Lincoln Center, Mozarteum University in Salzburg, the Art Institute of Chicago, the Ferenc Liszt Academy of Music in Budapest, the Santa Cecilia National Academy in Rome, Teatro La Fenice in Venice, Teatro Carlo Felice in Genoa, Gärtnerplatztheater in Munich, and the Central Conservatory Concert Hall in Beijing.
Gentile has been invited to participate at some of the world’s leading music festivals, and has received numerous commissions from institutions including the RAI in Naples, Milano and Rome, the Santa Cecilia the Academy, the French Ministry of Culture, the Munich Biennale, and the City of Genoa for the celebration of the 100th anniversary of the birth of the poet Eugenio Montale.
Ada Gentile has also held conferences at prestigious seats of higher learning, including Northwestern University, the University of Chicago, the Juilliard School, the University of Madrid, the Beijing Conservatory, and the Krakow Music Academy.
In 1988 she received the Award for Cultural Merit from the Polish Ministry of Culture.
From 1986 to 1988 Gentile was Artistic Director of the Goffredo Petrassi Chamber Orchestra. Since 1978 she has been Artistic Director of the New Musical Spaces Festival in Ascoli Piceno, Italy, which promotes contemporary music. From 1996 to 1999 she was Artistic Consultant for the Ventidio Basso Opera Theater in Ascoli Piceno. She has also been Vice Director and a member of the teaching staff at the Santa Cecilia Conservatory.