Rafael Aponte-Ledée

Puerto Rico (1938)
Corporate Member

In 1957 Rafael Aponte-Ledée obtained a scholarship from the government of Puerto Rico to continue musical studies in Spain. In October that same year he entered the Conservatorio de Música de Madrid (Madrid Conservatory of Music) to get the professional title in Composition in 1964. His main teachers in Madrid were Enrique Massó and Emilio López in Harmony. Francisco Calés Otero in Counterpoint and Fugue. Cristóbal Halffter in Composition. Pila Torregrosa, Piano.

In 1965 he traveled to Buenos Aires, Argentina, where he settled for two years with a scholarship from Instituto Torcuato Di Tella (Torcuato Di Tella Institute) to deepen his musicals studies with Alberto Ginastera and Gerardo Gandini.

He started to teach in 1967 at the Musical Conservatory of Puerto Rico as well as at the Music Department of the Puerto Rico University. Afterwards he was appointed University Professor of the Conservatory, position he occupied until his retirement in 2002.

Aponte Ledée has been commissioned by the Casals Festival, the Puerto Rican Culture Institute, the Symphonic Orchestra of Puerto Rico and “Meet The Composer”. He is a founder member of the Colegio de Compositores Latinoamericanos de Música de Arte (Collegium of Latin American Composers of Art Music) and of SGAE. His works have been published for Tritó Ediciones, in Barcelona and “Peer Music”, in New York. At the present time, he is Musical and Artistic Director of The Ibero-American Arts Festival of Puerto Rico.


After the tonal style used by Aponte Ledée in his earlier work (Diez canciones populares españolas, “Ten popular Spanish songs”, 1961, edit. Departamento de Instrucción Pública, San Juan, Puerto Rico) he started experimenting with the dodecaphonic system (Tema y seis diferencias, piano, “Theme and six differences”, 1963, edit. Peer International Corp.).

During his stay at Buenos Aires, and under the influence of Gerardo Gandini and Earle Brown, he begins to get involved in musical composition using the partial random technique, the open writing and the non-traditional notation. At the same time get involved into the field of electronic music, under the influence of Mario Davidovsky. Since 1986 he starts employing a totally defined system with respect to writing. In this new course he handles quotes of established composers mixing them with rhythmical procedures selected from Caribbean music.