Rodolfo S. Cornejo

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Rodolfo S. Buenaventura is the first Filipino composer who received an honory degree from a government recognized music school in the United States. He is also remarkable for his pianistic and compositional know-how by extemporizing a piano composition at the spur of the moment.

He was born on 15 May 1909 in Singalong, Manila. At the age of six, he had his formal piano lessons. After 2 years, he played fourteen pieces and six encores for his recital.In that same year, he became the organist of the Pasay Catholic Church when they moved in. When he was ten, he composed a piano piece entitled, "Glissando Waltz". He became so keen and inspired about music by his mother's genuine support. At 13, he composed the "Salute", a military march that was also published. At 14, twenty-six of his compositions were listed by the United Publishing Company Inc.

He graduated with Teacher's Diploma on Pianoforte and a Teacher's Diploma in Science and Composition. He taught in his Alma Mater, the UP Conservatory of Music. He became the researcher and official composer of the Philippine government-in-exile, as appointed by President Quezon where he was commissioned to write a symphony and an opera. He was also the composer of the documentary film on the funeral of President Quezon. He was also the soloist of the Manila Symphony Orchestra, with the Filipinas Youth Symphony Orchestra and with the [[UP Symphony Orchestra. He was also the musical-director of the Sampaguita and Vera-Perez Movie Companies.

He is a recipient of numerous awards whose compositional style suits to his audience and can not be classified.


  • Samson, Helen F. Contemporary Filipino Composers. Quezon City: Manlapaz Publishing Company, 1976.



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