Harold Guillén Monge

Harold Guillén Monge

Harold Guillén Monge is one of the most active saxophonists in the Costa Rican musical media. When he entered the University of Costa Rica, he started his formal education on the instrument with the professors Humberto Malavassi and Norman Calderón, as well as studying his bachelor and postgraduate degrees with Dr. Javier Valerio.

Since he was very young he has been into popular music, being part of different popular music groups in his native Costa Rica. He has shared the stage with important and renowned artists from the Latin-American tropical musical media and he still enjoys to go up the stage to play Salsa, Merengue, Son, Cumbia or Bolero.

Around 20 years of experience on popular music makes him invited to be part of Sonsax in 2009, which is one of the most renowned chamber music group in the country and Latin-America; quintet of saxophones and percussion, with whom he shares the creativity of the Latin-American music, besides the standard music from the traditional “classic” repertoire from the saxophone’s quartet. Alongside Sonsax, he has gone on tour to Colombia, Mexico, Brazil, Uruguay, Argentina, Honduras, USA, Hong Kong and many other countries around Europe, with the Costa Rican and Latin-American music theme going around.

He has performed in the most important concert halls in his country, and he constantly plays recitals. His repertoire covers a wide range of musical styles, traditional and contemporary repertoire, as well as Costa Rican and Latin-American repertoire. As a soloist, he has played with Cali and Cartago Municipality’s Philharmonic Orchestras, being this last city his residency. He has also played with the National Symphonic Orchestra of Costa Rica and multiple bands in his country, Mexico and Colombia.

He has worked as a professor and researcher since 1999 in the University of Costa Rica’s School of Musical Arts, from where he graduated with honors. Also, since 2002 he is a professor at the National Institute of Music, educational institution which is attached to the Culture Ministry of Costa Rica.

He is an active participant of the Sax-Fest-Costa Rica-International, which has been consolidated as one of the most important festivals in the Latin-American area. He is a founder member of the Latin American Alliance of Saxophonists, ALASAX for its initials in Spanish, formalized in Costa Rica in 2013.


Photo credit: Sergio Carvajal Barrientos