Szigetvári József reacts to Margittai Gábor’s critical review of the Néptáncantologia (anthology of folk dance choreographies) held in Budapest in January at the Erkel Theatre. Margittai’s review appeared in the newspaper „Magyar Nemzet” on January 27th. The event in question, is a yearly event, a showcase of some of the best amateur folk dance choreographies of the previous year. Szigetvári thinks that Margittai’s review was „neither critique, nor professional opinion. What appeared in the newspaper was concentrated maliciousness and bitterness...” While Szigetvári applauds the writing of... „Maácz László was the last dance reviewer... ....he didn’t hate folk dance, his work was spiced with his wry humour, he wrote about every dance event. It often two articles appeared on one event – one for the „Táncművészet” (the professional dance magazine) and at the same time one for the national newspapers which he changed so that someone who had never seen folk dance before, would run out and buy a ticket to the next performance... The task is different for the outside world...articles must be written that inspire interest, the „beauty value” must be called to the reader’s attention.” Szigetvári says that the professional analysis should be in the „Táncművészet” for the professionals to read while also saying that amateur folk dance should not be criticised, it should be understood, praised and nurtured.
The dance celebration Margittai Gábor’s critique of the Folk Dance Anthology 2002, a scathing review, in general bashing the state of amatuer Hungarian folk dance choreography and performance, with marginal praise deposited on three groups: a group from Kesckemét, a choreography of dances from Tardoskedd, and a choreography performed by the Ilosvai Selymes Péter Folk Dance Group. Printed in „Magyar Nemzet” January 27th, 2002
Semana Santa (Saint week). Easter in Spain’s Andalusian region. In the spring of 2000 ethnographic reseacher Gulyas Anna and photographer Molnár Zoltán were in Seville and also in a village called Setenil de las Bodegas at Easter time for this week long religious celebration which involves many, many religious processions by various groups of brotherhoods all carrying statues of saints and wearing costumes, some of the processions are done silently, some in the dark, some of the people process on their knees. Most inhabitiants participate in some way in these events.
The Hungarian National Cultural Heritage Ministery announces the application process for 2003 Young Master of Folk Arts. The conditions for application in all categories of Hungarian folk arts are detailed here. Applications must be submitted by April 30th, 2003 to the Hungarian Heritage House – Folk Arts Workshop at Corvin tér in Budapest. Applications are evaluated and awards will be presented on August 20th, 2003. This is a state recognized title.
In Memory of Pesovár Ferenc – born April 23rd, 1930 in the town of Herend. He recieved his diploma for museology and ethnography from Eötvös Loránd University in 1955. He danced profressionally in the Hónvéd Ensemble. From 1957 until his death he was head of the department of ethnography and museology at the István Király Museum in Székesfehérvár. Marking the 20th anniversary of the death of Pesovár Ferenc – the Alba Régia Dance Association of Székesfehérvár has published a book entitled (The shepherd looks for his sheep. Folk dances of Fejér County.) A collection of Pesovár’s earlier studies and articles gathered and prepared for this publication by his colleagues and friends. By Lukács László
New Publication: Abkarovits Endre: (Dance house portraits) This book is a collection of interviews with key persons involved in the dance house movement. After 30 years, very few Hungarians have documented the movement in any way – the movement itself has been busy documenting, learning and preserving the rural dance and music traditions. Some of the interviews have appeared in the FolkMAGazin, some in other periodicals. This book makes a significant contribution of written information about the dance house movement. In Hungarian. Published by Hagyománok Háza. Budapest, 2003. Page 14
Kilenc Kiss Ferenc (9 Kiss Ferenc-s) – A portrait film about musician Kiss Ferenc. An Etnofon Folk Music production. Printed here are excerpts from the script of the film under headings: signs of wandering, origins, patience, religion, betrayal, aurochs, equipment for survival, national feeling, ending. Writer/music composition – Kiss Ferenc Director: Kálmár András, Producer: Novák Péter
The Muzsikás Ensemble with Sebestyén Márta and the Pro Musica Women’s Choir from Nyíregyháza will be performing at the Budapest Music Academy on April 5th, 2003. „We have a dream...of having the opportunity to share with our audience what it is that traditional music and Kodály and Bartók’s music means to us.... ....we have started a ten year program at the Music Academy to present various sides of their life works. In 1999 violinist Alexander Balanescu, in 2000 celloist Roel Dieltiens, in 2001 pianist Jandó Jenő, in 2002 the Keller string quartet performed in these concerts and now with the Pro Musicsa Womens Choir.... works of Kodály and Bartók will be performed with Muzsikás performing the traditional tunes that form the basis for those works.”
Conversation with Timár Sándor and Suzuki Jin San. Timár Sándor’s relationship with Japan began in 1978. Since then he has been invited to Japan 44 times to teach Hungarian dance. Suzuki Jin San met Timár in Japan in 1998. Now he has settled in Hungary and dances in the Timár Chamber Ensemble. Also mentioned herein is Timár’s book and video about his dance teaching method; „Néptáncnyelven” (in the language of folk dance), which is now being translated into Japanese. By Hollókői Lajos
Căluş – A Romanian men’s dance ritual done at Pentecost. At the 16th Solo Dance Competition in Békéscsaba the calus dance was danced by competitors as the elective – or freely selected – dance. Ónodi Béla who has been to Romania several times documenting this dance custom in both traditional and stage settings has comments here about how this dance was used at the solo dance festival and preservation of this tradition.
The Solo Dance Competition in Békéscsaba. Attila has two main comments here. First, any band accompanying the dancers should be able to play the music for the compulsory dances at a higher level of proficiency, and that ideally more than one band should be hired. Second, that in the freely chosen dance category, most of the competitors danced little choreographies, even though the rules of the competition call for improvisation. Out of some 45 competitors, only 6 or 7 of them were actually improvised. By Tompa Attila
Listing of awards for the 16th National Solo Dance Competition/Festival. Held in Békéscsaba in Eastern Hungary on January 11, 2003. Jury members were: dr. Felföldi László, Németh Ildikó, Lévai Péter, Szűcs Gábor and Hortobágyi Gyöngyvér
Kárpátia Band. Moldváhon I. Vásár. Moldavian music. A short description of their musical inspirations and directions. „Repetition and imitation – though without a doubt, is the first phase of learning – in and of itself, it doesn’t serve to build up our music. This can be done only through continuously demanding a deeper understanding and professional knowledge. This is the goal of Kárpátia as a city band... ...in the mid 1700’s historian Dimitrie Cantemir said „When considering the size of the province of Moldavia, it is hard to believe that so many peoples different from one another could live as they do there. Next to the Moldavians, are Greeks, Albanians, Serbs, Bulgarians, Poles, Kozaks, Russians, Hungarians, Germans, Armenians, Jews, and many-childrened Gypsies...".„
Gázsa’s New CD (From Budapest to Kommando). Papp István „Gázsa” plays music from many regions, including music from the village of Kürt (Strekov –in Slovakia) and Kommando (a special village in Southeastern Transylvania) with his band and many more of his musician friends. See article in Hungarian for listing music and musicians on the recording.
New CD: Régi Jók Erdelyből (Old dances from Transylvania). A selection of Bodó-Bán János’ field recordings of traditional musicians from six different regions in Transylvania – recorded over a 15 year period.
New CD The Bekecs Ensemble – Music from the Maros region of Transylvania. This band has been collecting tunes in this region for 20 years. See announcement in Hungarian for contact info.
Hungarian Folk Costume video series – Part 2. Costumes of Hosszúhetény, Méra, Rábaköz. Produced by Konkám Studio with the Muharay Elemér Association.
New CD. In memory of the village bands of Gömör-Kishont County. Music of the Gömör region – in the northern part of the Hungarian language area – today located in Southcentral Slovakia. See announcement in Hungarian for listing of musicians on the recording. Released by Vitus Kht, distributed by Fonó records
Recommendation – two CDs by the Szeredás Ensemble „Ten steps” is a selction of Transylvanian music, while „Hungarian Calendar” is a childrens record. By Darmos István
Méta Ensemble is 20 years old. Interview with Salamon Beáta, lead fiddler. Méta is one of Budapest’s revival bands. For many years they had a dance house every Sunday on Somogyi utca in Budapest’s 8th district. Presently members of the band play for the Hungarian State Folk Ensemble. They have released a new CD of new recordings of their all-time favorite tunes. They are planning a concert tour of 19 counties. Members of the band are: Salamon Beáta – lead fiddle, Gera Attila – clarinet and other flutes, Nagy Zsolt – viola, Mohácsy Bertalan – double bass, Porteleki Zoltán – cymbalom. Guest singer: Németh Ferenc. By Abkarovits Endre
"Szentes” Varga Ferenc – traditional dancer born in 1919 in the village of Szany in Western Hungary’s Győr-Moson-Sopron County. Varga Ferenc was awarded the title of Master of Folk Arts in 1980. Dances from this village are: Dús, broom dance, csárdás and verbung. He danced in Budapest the first time in 1931 as part of the Saint Stephen’s day Gyöngyösbokréta (Pearly Bouquet) performances. Films of him dancing are in the film archive of the Hungarian Institute of Musicology – archive numbers are listed in the article in Hungarian. By Busai Norbert
New Publication: Martin György – (The music of the Gypsy stick dance) Published by the Institute of Musicology of the Hungarian Academy of Sciences and the Hungarian Heritage House. Budapest. 2003. 428 pages. Edited by Koválcsik Katalin and Kubínyi Zsuzsa. Accompanying CD has music selected by Kubínyi Zsuzsa and Németh István. Publication includes some English and English version is in the works. Prepared for publication by Martin’s colleagues and students upon the 20th anniversary of his death, this volume contains Martin’s unfinished monographic work from his estate. By Karácsonyi Zoltán
Beszprémy Katalin’s speech to open an exhibition of folk crafts made by craftsmen and students of the Kresz Mária Foundation Potters Center at the Cultural Center in the village of Zsámbék. The exhibition opened on March 4, 2003 and will close on April 6, 2003. The Kresz Mária Foundation is dedicated to preserving and upholding Hungarian traditional crafts.
Toy museum – Kecskemét, Hungary. The Szórakaténusz Hungarian Traditional Toy Museum and Workshop was founded in 1981 and today has a collection of over 15,000 objects. This is an announcement for the museum’s new permanent exhibition. See article in Hungarian for contact information.
A dream realized – Halmos Béla talks about the formation and present status of the Dance House Archive Located in at the Hungarian Heritage House at Corvin tér in Budapest, the idea for the Dance House Archive idea came about in the process of organizing an exhibition of dance house documentation for an event in 1997 celebrating 25 years since the first dance house was held in Budapest. Now working as a part of the Lajtha László Workshop (within the Hungarian Heritage House), the Dance House Archive has set up the necessary database and are in the process of organizing the materials collected to date. Audio and video materials have been handed over to the public collection and audio-video services department of the Lajtha Workshop. K. Tóth László
"Mátyáskám". Kóka Rózália has orgnaized a new and improved second printing of her collection of folk tales about the Hungarian King Mátyás – the 560th anniversary of his birth was on February 23, 2003. The new volume includes the tale of the „magic dove".
Hegedűs Péter, one of the managers of the Budavári Fortuna Restaurant. discusses Hungarian gastronomy and globalization and what needs to be done in order for Hungarian gastronomy to regain its former glory. After 50 years of communism which caused a decline in Hungarian food culture, now historical research needs to be done to figure out what people were eating before and rediscover the Hungarian kitchen, while also paying careful attention to quality of ingredients, Hungarian wines and considering the tastes of people in today’s world. K. Tóth László
Listing of the results and a few comments on the 6th National Molnár István Choreography Forum held on March 9, 2003 at „FMH” in Budapest. Both traditional and thematic choreographies danced by both adult and children’s ensembles were presented. Names of the choreographers were kept secret from both the members of the jury and audience until awards were presented. 1st prize: Szávai József: Dravamenti wedding. 2nd prize: Nagy Myrtill – Konkoly László: Tardoskedd dances. 3rd prize – Furik Rita’s choreography danced by the Mecsek Dance Ensemble. The Molnár Choreography forum is organized by the Budapest Cultural Center (’BMK’).
Should distribution of traditional music be limited? This is a discussion of whether or not original field recordings of traditional singers or musicians done for research purposes, should be distributed to a wider public. Németh says, amongst other things, that the performer should be asked whether or not they agree to this. He also makes the point that anyone interested in original recordings should first of all familiarize themselves with the existing recordings. Any center or institution should invest in those recordings already existing and develop a system for accessing the information and music on them. The 11 basic recordings and series already available to the public are listed in the article in Hungarian. By Németh István of the Hungarian Institute of Musicology
Use of the notion of the „étude” in teaching folk dance. In this article the author discusses a method of teaching dance that makes use of „the étude – a movement piece written for technique development". It is important that the étude should not be boring. Its function is for practice and for teaching the material – not for performance. The étude is a short combination of movement that can be repeated and that can be made into a longer movement progression. In dance learning and teaching the étude aids practice of the movments themselves, while also promoting evaluation of movements and groups of movements. Sziláygi Zsolt and Nagy István are quoted in this article by Kovács Henrik.
Photo exhibition – opened December 2002. On the life, activities and performances of the Hargita National Székely Folk Ensemble of Csíkszereda (Miercurea Cuic) in Transylvania, Romania. Sponsors of this professional Hungarian ensemble and realization of the photo exhibition are: City of Csíkszereda, Hungarian National Cultural Fund Program, Hungarian Collegium, RI Design, András Foundation. Report by András Mihály
Reports on three events: 4th Dance House Festival at the ’Tanulok Háza’ in Temesvár (in Romania) on December 7th, 2002. Szentendre Dance Ensemble’s performance on December 22nd; choreographers: Fitos Dezső and Kocsis Enikő. Pipacsok Folk Dance Ensemble’s performance at the Budai Vigadó on December 19th. The ensemble is from the town of Székelykeresztúr. Reports by Záhonyi András
The Alliance of Folk Crafts Associations „NESZ” celebrated its 20th birthday at an event on February 1st, 2003 at „FMH” in Budapest. There was a potluck of traditional foods prepared by members, exhibition of photographs and crafts, with dance house provided through cooperation with the Martin György Folk Dance Association and the Dance House Association. „NESZ” organizes many folk crafts events and workshops, as well as two main events every year: The Folk Crafts Festival and Market held every year in the Castle Hill area of Budapest on August 20th and the Whitsuntide Festival held every year since 1996 at the village museum in Szentendre.
Szék Days. A dance camp in the village of Szék (in Transylvania) organized by local people. In 2002 the 3rd Szék Folk dance camp was held and organized by the Szék City Public Association. Participants may choose to stay in their own tents or with a family in Szék. Food for the camp is local cuisine prepared by cooks that usually cook for weddings. Dance in 2002 was taught by Szabó Szilárd and Németh Ildikó and Gémesi Zoltán and Sóskuti Edit. Folk costume demonstrations and other events are part of the camp program. The concept for the week long camp is for participants to become acquainted with local customs and traditions while learning the local dances. Next camp: 2003 August 17–24. Report by Kovács Flóra
Listing of 2003’s summer camps and workshops
Report on 7th Csángó Festival held on February 22, 2003 in Budapest at the Petőfi Csarnók organized by the Pro Minoritate Foundation. This event always totally packs the venue. There is a performance by both traditional and revival performers followed by dance house until morning. Traditional dancers, singers and musicians from various Csángó Hungarian villages in Moldavia and Gyimes are brought to Budapest for the event. By Abkarovits Endre
Report on Csángó Carnival at the Fonó Music Hall in Budapest. A series of balls were held at the Fonó this year starting with the Folk Dancers Ball in January, on February 1 there was the Balkan Ball, the Csángó Carnival was on February 8th and then on February 13th was the so-called „Klezmér Carnival". At least four revival bands played along with singer from Moldávia, Petrás Mária, at Csángó Carnival. By Csáfordi Magdolna