MARCO POLO C. IGNACIO (born September 18, 1983) is a composer, songwriter, arranger, violinist, and a music teacher. He and his rondalla arrangements, which trended on social media on 2018 and 2019, paved the way on re-introducing rondalla music to the present generation by arranging popular OPM songs for the rondalla ensemble.
He is the composer of the song “When God Made A Way,” a wedding song that was interpreted and made famous by the wedding band, GSeven Band
EARLY LIFE AND EDUCATION IN THE UST CONSERVATORY OF MUSIC: Hailing from the municipality of Santa Maria, Bulacan, Philippines, he graduated from the University Of Santo Tomas Conservatory Of Music with a degree of Bachelor in Music, Major in Composition. He first learned the piano at age 5 and took the violin as his main instrument at age 7. He enrolled first as a violin major in the conservatory, and studied under violin professors Proceso Yusi, Sergio Esmilla Jr. and lastly Rosa Puertollano. He later shifted to composition in his third year (also taken some music education units), due to his growing interest in arranging, orchestration and composition. He held his graduation recital at UST, dated October 1, 2007, with notable success, under Professor Manuel Maramba and Antonio Africa.
AS RONDALLA INSTRUCTOR IN HIS HOMETOWN: In 2006, he was made the district rondalla instructor of Sta. Maria, Bulacan. The rondalla of the municipality of Sta. Maria is later transferred to Brgy. Sta. Cruz Elementary School, around 2008, was located in a remote barangay in Sta. Maria, Bulacan. In these years, he arranged simple rondalla pieces that later came to be compiled as his methods book for the rondalla ensemble. He always in into consideration that the arranged songs would be easy for the guitar and bass section and that the melody of the song would be not hard for Grades 4 to 6.
AS VIOLINIST AND SHEET MUSIC ENCODER: As early in 2001 and 2003, he was being invited to play in events that further developed his skills in playing by ear and sightreading. Making extra income as a wedding violinist with SJT Strings under Thess Tuazon, he notated lead sheets for the wedding instrumental group and later for his music ensemble, which started his instrumental lead sheet compendium as early as 2006. As he was studying in the conservatory, he learned to notate scores using Finale software and encoded the orchestral parts of the operas Eugene Onegin (2006) of UST and Susannah (2006) of U.P. He was commissioned on encoding pieces, such as kundiman music and compilations of religious music. As for weddings, he is presently playing for “GSeven Band” under the management of Lailanie Gumamela and keyboardist-arranger Michael Gumamela. One of their first project is to re-interpret and produce the song “When God Made A Way.”
He is also the violinist of the pop-rock band “Hey Jace” (under the frontman John Christian Valeroso) and is a session recording violinist, notably in the song of Join The Club’s “Langit ‘Pag Kapiling Ka.”
SERVICE ON PUBLIC ELEMENTARY SCHOOL: Taking the necessary education units, he took and passed the Licensure Exams for Professional Teachers (Secondary) on March 11, 2021. In May 2013, he was employed as an elementary teacher at Sta. Maria Central School in which he worked for five years. Balancing both his careers as a musician and as a public school teacher, he completed his academic requirements for the Masters Degree, in Bulacan State University, major in Educational Management.
WORKING AT FFHNAS: In 2018, he transferred his station to Fortuno F. Halili National Agricultural School (FFHNAS), teaching under the Special Program for the Arts Department (Music). Then in late 2018 and early 2019, together with Anthony Ryan T. Cruz (rondalla conductor) and the encouragement of Juan Gregorio, he arranged several popular kinds of music for rondalla namely: Titibo-Tibo, Kiss Me, Kiss Me, Mundo, and Buwan. The rondalla’s video performance of “Mundo” went viral and was featured in 24 Oras (GMA 7 news program); It was also shared in various news pages on Facebook and blogs, making the school rondalla of FFHNAS well-known. The following school year, they played “Star Wars Medley”, “Game of Thrones Medley” and the pop song “Ikaw at Ako”, paving the way for their TV guesting at UNTV’s “Good Morning Kuya” and “Talentado Ka” segment of TV5.
WEBSITE LAUNCH UNDER AMRI WEB PORTAL SERVICES: On September 18, 2020, his website www.marcopoloignacio.com was launched as an artist-business platform to provide sheet music and music commissions. His composition, “Rondalla Symphonia 2020” was also launched on his website where sound samples of the composition are available on his YouTube channel.
PUBLISHED WORKS FOR RONDALLA: He also co-authored a rondalla arrangement book, with Anthony Ryan T. Cruz. It was approved last December 2020 as a book project under DepEd Region III that will be released to DepEd Schools in Region III in School Year 2021-2022.
LIST OF ACADEMIC COMPOSITIONS
Vocalise (for flute and clarinet)
Let There Be An End (an art song with declamations)
Suite for Woodwind Quintet
Piece for Brass Quintet
Piece for String Orchestra and Tuned Percussion
Piece for Piano and Orchestra (2007)
Symphonic Suite in Three Movements (2007)
(available on youtube.com)
The Power of Four (solo clarinet piece)
Dreams (a nuance) - piano piece
Piano Sonata 2006
The Warmth of Home (incidental piece for soprano, flute, cello)
Night Scenes (piece for tutti violins and cellos)
NEWS, RELATED LINKS
GMA7 24 ORAS: Rondalla version ng kantang “Mundo” ng IV of Spades na tinugtog ng mga estudyante, kinaaliwan online:
UNTV Good Morning Kuya TV Guesting of FFHNAS S.P.A. Rondalla:
TALENTADO KA TV 5 Segment
UNTV Interview at FFHNAS:
Coconuts Manila: Interview with the arranger
FAMOUS Youtube Videos of FFHNAS Rondalla:
Ikaw At Ako: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=CQrgeXged0g
Credits: Moira Dela Torre and Jason Hernandez
Ikaw At Ako Facebook video with 1.2 million views: https://web.facebook.com/marcopoloignacio/videos/10217476766443429/
Credits: Moira Dela Torre and Jason Hernandez
Credits: Juan Karlos Labajo
Star Wars Medley for Rondalla: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=qGywPrSeD9g
Credits: John Williams, composer
Game of Thrones Medley: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Icgl5RhKOSI
Credits: Ramin Djawadi, composer
Mundo – IV of Spades: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=_F_Xftb7hi4
Credits: IV of Spades
Frolic (Curb Your Enthusiasm Theme): https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=JzXDzQLoxl8&feature=youtu.be
Credits: Luciano Michelini
Mission Impossible Theme: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=_4k48ZZ3mGk
Credits: Lalo Schifrin
WHEN GOD MADE A WAY: GSeven Band
Tee Radio Guesting of GSeven Band (Full Live Video)
Tee Radio Guesting: When God Made A Way
As member of HEY JACE Band:
Dekada : https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=EVOh-kD6phU
Tinig : https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=hAgWlLCuiAQ
Walang Gitna : https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=lONpVEUiVdM