Born in Caracas-Venezuela, Víctor Varela studied composition (1981-87) electronic music (1982-85) and piano (1978-86) with Antonio Mastrogiovanni, Eduardo Kusnir and Rebecca Matos respectively at the National Conservatory of Music Juan José Landaeta where he obtained the degree in composition in 1987.Between 1990-94 he lived in The Netherlands. He studied composition with Geert van Keulen at Sweelinck Conservatorium Amsterdam (Composition Prize 1993) and electronic music with Gilius van Bergeijk at the Royal Conservatoire, The Hague. He also got lectures and tuition, among others, from: Ton de Leeuw, Louis Andriessen, Peter Schat, Theo Loevendie, John Adams and Trevor Wishart.
His catalogue includes works for orchestra, vocal and instrumental chamber music, with electronics and computer devices.
His music has been performed at festivals and events in Caracas, San Juan de Puerto Rico, Montevideo, New York, Bloomington, Miami, Amsterdam, Barcelona, Madrid, Copenhagen, Reykjavik, Berlin, Dublin, Sâo Paulo, Quito, Vienna, Lahti, Los Angeles, Mexico City, Krakow, Phoenix, Stockholm and Gothenburg; including majors festivals like ISCM World Music Days, San Juan’s Biennial of Contemporary Music, Caracas’s Latin American Music Festival, Inter American Music and Dance Festival, De Suite Music Week, II International Festival "Block flute & Electronics", 34th International Horn Symposium, Green Umbrella Series, Los Angeles, International New Music Forum "Manuel Enríquez", Mexico City, Stockholm New Music Festival. International Festival of Modern Art, Odessa.
In Venezuela he has received the National Composition Award in 1986 and 1989, and the Caracas City Municipal Award in 1987 and 1990. In 1996 his Second String Quartet was selected to represent Venezuela at the World Music Days in Copenhagen; in 2005 his Axle-asimétrica II was selected to represent Sweden at the World Music Days in Zagreb. He has written works commissioned by the Teresa Carreño Opera Theatre, the Venezuelan Society for Electronic Music, the Swedish Arts Grants Committee, the Swedish Arts Council and Concerts Sweden.
Víctor Varela was teacher of harmony and orchestration at the National Conservatory J.J. Landaeta (1983-90) and Music Analysis at IUDEM (1987-90), both of Caracas. He has been lecturer at the Venezuela's Central University, Simón Bolívar, Stanford and Gothenburg Universities. He was member of the Venezuelan Society for Electronic Music, and has contributed with articles of analysis for magazines such as Música y Ensayo of Caracas and Amsterdam Sur of Amsterdam.
Living in Sweden since 1994 Víctor Varela took the Swedish
citizenship in 2001. In Gothenburg, he has been member of
the association Levande Musik's
board, where he has produced concerts of Latin-American chamber music. He also has worked
for the association Musik i Blekinge and the Gothenburg Opera House.
Since 2002 he is an active member of the Society of Swedish Composers.