Dr. Raul M. Sunico, praised for “unusual gifts of lyricism and poetry in his playing” by his eminent mentor Sascha Gorodnitzki, has earned international recognition as a concert pianist, orchestral soloist, and a composer-arranger of Philippine music.
Excelling at a number of international competitions, Sunico won the silver medal at the Viotti International Piano Competition (Vercelli), was a finalist at the Busoni International Piano Competition (Bolzano), and was a recipient of the Henry Cowell Prize at the University of Maryland International Piano Competition. He has also been an active performer on the international stage, having given solo recitals throughout the world. In the Philippines, he was the recipient of the TOYM (The Outstanding Young Men) Award for Music, the Prudential Award for Overseas Filipino & Organizations, the Patnubayng Sining at Kalinangan Award (City of Manila), the UP Alumni Award, the Phi Kappa Phi Diamond Jubilee Award, and the 2004 Aliw Award for Best Instrumental Performer.
Sunico first attracted attention when he won the Manila Symphony Orchestra’s Young Artists’ Auditions by performing the Liszt Concerto No. 1 conducted by Dr. Herbert Zipper. He later became a featured soloist with numerous orchestras all over the world.
He has recorded more than 30 CDs and cassettes, including 13 volumes of Filipino folk songs and kundimans that he arranged for classical piano. He has also embarked on a series of projects regarding music education. Sunico is the author of Music, Art & Physical Education as well as Musika at Sining 6 – Dr. P-Ed accredited textbooks currently used by private and public schools respectively.
Sunico graduated from UP with a Bachelors Degree in Music (cum laude), a Bachelors in Science & Mathematics, and a Masters in Statistics. A scholarship from the Young Artists’ Foundation of the Philippines enabled him to attend the Julliard School in New York, where he received a Master of Music degree. Further grants from the Amon Foundation and New York University helped him obtain a Doctor of Philosophy degree, majoring in Piano Performance, from the latter, at which his dissertation featured a performance guide to Philippine Piano Concertos. He is currently the Dean of the University of Santo Tomas Conservatory of Music (Philippines).