Roldán, Amadeo , Cuban violinist, conductor, and composer; b. Paris (of Cuban parents), July 12, 1900; d. Havana, March 2, 1939. He studied violin at the Madrid Cons. with Fernandez Bordas, graduating in 1916. He won the Sarasate Violin Prize, and subsequently studied composition with Conrado del Campo in Madrid and with Pedro Sanjuân. In 1921 he settled in Havana, and in 1924 he became concertmaster of the Orquesta Filarmònica; in 1925, asst. conductor; in 1932, conductor. He was prof. of composition at the Cons. (from 1935). In his works, he employed with signal success the melorhythms of Afro-Cuban popular music; as a mulatto, he had an innate understanding of these elements.
DRAMATIC: Ballet : La Rebambaramba, employing a number of Cuban percussion instruments (1927–28; suite, Havana, Aug. 12, 1928). orch.:Obertura sobre témas cubanos (Havana, Nov. 29, 1925); El Milagro de Anaquillé (Havana, Sept. 22, 1929); 3 Toques for Chamber Orch. (1931). chamber:Ritmica Nos. 1–4 for Piano and Wind Quintet, and Nos. 5 and 6 for Percussion Ensemble. Vocal:Danza negra for Voice and 7 Instruments (1929); Motivos de son for Voice and 9 Instruments (1930).
—Nicolas Slonimsky/Laura Kuhn/Dennis McIntire