Interview from 1993 with the late Vargyas Lajos – folk music researcher. Discussion of the 8th volume of a series called ’Népzene tára’ [collection of folk music] which had just been published (11 years after the manuscript had been submitted to the publisher) at that time. This volume contains 30 types of folk songs. „...of course there is no style [of folk song] that we developed. Melodies on the other hand; there are hundreds, thousands that can only be found here [in Hungary] and that our people have invented. They are variants of eastern melodies and/or representatives of that style”. Interview by Halmos Béla (from video recording for Hungarian Television.)
Review of a concert at the Bartók Theatre at the Palace of the Arts in Budapest on January 18th, 2008. This concert was to have presented an overview of the new folk music department at the Liszt Academy of Music. The critic here left at the break, apparantly disgusted with the proportion of representation of the actual students in the program, and displeased with the Muzsikás Ensemble’s performance. By Kiss Eszter Veronika. First appeared in Magyar Nemzet, January 21, 2008.
New CD: Folk songs from the villages of Kecel and Kiskunhalas. A two CD album of traditional songs from these two communities in the Hungarian plain. Includes archival recordings collected on location by ethnomusicologist Szomjas-Schiffert György in the 1950s and ’60s and recordings of the Kecel Traditional Women’s Chorus from 2006. Edited by Bodor Anikó and Németh István. Released in 2007 by Bács-Kiskun County and the Dési Institute. Announcement by Paksa Katalin
Hungarian kings, saints, brave warriors. Interview with Kiss Ferenc, composer and director of the Etnofon Music Consort. On March 18th as part of Budapest’s Spring Festival, a world music concert of Kiss Ferenc’s work will be held at the Liszt Academy of Music. The concert will celebrate the legends of 15th century Hungarian kings Hunyadi János and Hunyadi Mátyás. Performing in addition to the Etnofon Music Consort will be Borbély Mihály (Vujicsics Ensemble) and singers Bognár Szilvia, Szvorák Kati and Juhász Katalin and others. By Kiss Eszter Veronika
2008 is the year of King Matthias Corvinus (1443–1490), aka Hunyadi Mátyás, who was king of Hungary from 1458 until his death. Here Dr. Kríza Ildikó tells about King Mátyás, Hungarian hero in folklore. King Mátyás was known as being intelligent, he fought for his people, for truth and justice, and worked hard so that the country would thrive. Akadémiai Press has recently published Dr. Kríza’s book on this subject. Conversation with Kóka Rozália
Kodály Zoltán the folk music researcher – Part I. In honour of the 125th anniversary of Kodaly’s birth, from September 13th, 2007–February 1st, 2008 documents regarding Kodály’s collection work, photos and letters were on exhibition at the Hungarian Heritage House in Budapest. The exhibition was organized by Pávai István. Selected items from the exhibition will be printed in folkMAGazin this year. In this issue are excerpts from Kodály’s letters on meeting folk music researcher Vikár Béla for the first time in 1903 and on Kodály’s first trip to collect folk songs in Hungarian communities in what is now Slovakia.
Portrait of a traditional fi sherman. Lencse Dénes lives in the village of Mecsér in the region known as Szigetköz in Northwestern Hungary along the so-called Mosoni Duna – which is a branch of the Danube. He has always lived there and has always been a fisherman, and so was his father and father before him. He learned his trade from his father and still uses the traditional methods and tools. A short account of Mr. Lencse’s life and profession. Includes recipe for fish soup. By Henics Tamás
Interview with Németh Ildikó, folk dancer, teacher, choreographer dedicated to the authentic style. Ildikó turned 50 in 2007. To celebrate, she brought together the traditional dancers and choreographies that have inspired her during her career, which began at the Hungarian Institute of Ballet as a high school student. She also brought together a group of her peers, students and family: to form the unusual full length dance program called Ostinato, which was performed in December of 2007 at the Hungarian Heritage House in Budapest. Interview by Strack Orsolya
Melodies of the Kazaks in Mongolia. Some 100,000 Kazaks live in Bajan Ölgij County in Western Mongolia alongside Mongolians and Tuva peoples. The people in this region live in tents tending their animals in the summer monthes, and move into stable wooden or adobe houses for the winter. The music of Kazak inhabitants from the village of Nalajhra is discussed here. The Kazaks were moved there as part of a Soviet relocation program in the 1950’s and have maintained their Kazak identity. Mongolian Kazaks sing often at celebrational family meals. They sing ’simple songs’ of love for their homeland and ancestors. Like the Hungarians, they also have songs that bid farewell to the bride upon leaving her family and childhood. There is also a form of sung epic poetry these are epics from 200 to 10,000 lines in length and serve as a sort of library on the culture. Their melodies basically move on a ’do-pentatonic scale’. See article in Hungarian for samples of music. By ethnomusicilogist Sipos János – see also his book in English on same subject published by Akadémai Kiadó in Budapest, 2001.
A story about the village of Zomba in Hungary’s Tolna County as told by Mrs Schneider János (Piller Magdolna). Mainly this woman’s memories communicate the chaos of the World War Two period and its aftermath and what that meant for this village. „Just before WW.II., 229 Hungarian families and 238 families of German descent – a total of 2040 people lived in Zomba. After the war, 172 of the German familes were deported, 158 Székely familes (from Transylvania) and 44 familes from Slovakia were moved into their homes. 66 German familes remained in the village...” This is an account of personal losses of family members that never returned from the war, those that were war prisoners, having to house Russian soldiers in their homes, then later being ousted from their homes by the authorities with nothing and those familes that moved into their places... and some lifetime friendships that formed. As told to Kóka Rozália.
The 2008 National Dance House Festival and Crafts Market will be held April 11–13. On the evening of April 11th at the Hungarian Heritage House there will be a concert previewing of the weekend’s events. The Festival will be held at the Papp László Sport Arena in Budapest and the Saturday night ball will be at Petőfi Csarnok.