Koji Kondo (近藤 浩治, August 13, 1961) is a Japanese video game composer for Nintendo. Among the first sound designers hired by the company, Kondo has composed for many of Nintendo's largest franchises, such as Super Mario and The Legend of Zelda, and many of his works have become renowned.
Kondo was born on August 13, 1961, in Nagoya. Since kindergarten he attended Yamaha Music classes, learning to play the electronic organ until his second year of high school, around the time his parents bought him a synthesizer, the Yamaha CS-30. Kondo enrolled at the Osaka University of Arts under the Fine Arts program, and joined an amateur band with several other students. During this time, Nintendo had posted a recruitment advertisement at the university for sound designers (the first time they had done this). Kondo applied for the position and was hired in 1984.
Kondo's first project for Nintendo was the arcade title Punch-Out!!, though this was before he was officially hired. At the time of his hiring, Kondo did not own a Family Computer, but had played many arcade titles (Donkey Kong 3 being popular around that time).
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