Born in Quito, Ecuador in 1985, José Rafael Subía Valdez studied electroacoustic Composition at Quilmes National University in Argentina. During his studies, he won different research grants that allowed him to work as a teacher assistant as well as to investigate in fields of electronic music composition and computer music programming. He worked under the guidance of important Argentine composers like Dr. Pablo Cetta, Dr. Pablo Di Liscia and Carmelo Saitta. He also attended specialized courses for composers and artists that included different creative techniques and the learning of diverse technological tools of software and hardware. After finalizing his studies, he continued to learn composition with Julio Viera. In 2010, he won the Melos/Gandini Scholarship that permitted him and other nine composers to study with Gerardo Gandini.
During his research period in Argentina; he developed specific programs for interactive music. He also developed tutorials and programs for different artistic collaborations and academic purposes. He has presented papers and conferences in different events of technological and artistic interest such as the Pure Data Convention 2011 in Weimar – Germany, the CampusParty in Quito – Ecuador and the Linux Audio Conference of 2012 at Stanford University in the USA. Due to his specialized skills in the Pure Data programming environment, he gave different intense programming courses in U.N.A. (Arg.), Universidad de Cuenca (Ec.) and ITAE (Ec.)
He attended different doctoral courses in U.C.A. (Arg.) and UNQ (Arg.), from which he passed with the highest scores. In 2014 he moved to Edinburgh to start the Digital Composition and Performance Masters program, finishing it with distinction in August of 2015. Tha same year, he won the ECA Research Award and the Thomas Laing Reilly scholarship that has allowed him to continue with his Ph.D. under the supervision of Dr. Michael Edwards and Professor Peter Nelson.
He has written music for solo players, ensembles, and orchestra with electronics including live processing of sound. His music has been played in Ecuador, Argentina, Spain, Italy, Germany, Mexico, Japan, South Africa & the U.K. by distinguished ensembles and solo players including Rei Nakamura (Jpn.), Aventure Ensemble (Ger.), Martín Devoto (Arg.), Pascal Pons (Fr.), Vertixe Sonora Ensemble (Esp.), Federico Landaburu (Arg.), Juliana Moreno (Arg.) among others. His work focuses on the composition of pieces that treat live electronic generated sounds and live sound processing with new approaches; this is the product of his intense investigation during his numerous grants.
His professional career as an educator started in National Unversity of Quilmes (U.N.Q.) where he was Teacher Assitant in computer music courses as well as composition. He also taught at the National Arts University -multimedia school- (U.N.A.) and the Music School of the Argentinian syndicate of musicians (SADEM). In Ecuador, he worked at the National Conservatory of Music in Quito where he taught electroacoustic composition. As a concert producer and artistic director, he worked in collaboration with conDiT -Argentina- and in 2013 he was appointed as the curator of the Contemporary Music Festival in Ecuador -Encuentro Compositores de Vanguardia- that consisted of a large-scale project including the 4 main symphony orchestras of Ecuador.