Philip Rugel (b. 1970) began writing music at the age of thirteen; mostly bassoon duets that he would write to get out of having to play his etudes at his weekly bassoon lessons. What grew out of this were numerous chamber works by the age of seventeen, and an opera for his senior recital at the Interlochen Arts Academy (Michigan) in 1988. After this successful premier, Philip continued on to the Eastman School of Music where he would study with the leading composers of the time; including Christopher Rouse, Joseph Schwantner and Samuel Adler. Additionally, he studied at The American Conservatory in Fontainebleau, France.
Philip's career since college has consisted of an output of song cycles, string quartets, works for woodwinds, and his opera, Purgatory, which was premiered in Sydney, Australia in 2016. Philip continues to write both large scale and chamber works in his hometown of Kalamazoo, Michigan.