Cuban musician, composer, musical director and founder of several orchestras, Gonzolo Roig was a pioneer of the symphonic movement in Cuba. He graduated in music studies at the Havana Conservatory. In 1922 he was co-founder of the Symphony Orchestra in Havana, of which he becomes music director.

In 1927 he was appointed director of the Municipal Music Band of Havana. During his tenure as director (he held the position until his death) he made countless contributions to the Cuban music. In 1931, while participating in the creation of the National Theatre, he composed and premiered (next year) his zarzuela, Cecilia Valdés, a typical example of the Cuban lyric theatre. In 1938 he founded the National Opera in Havana, which he directed for a few years.