A special exhibition at the Hungarian Museum of Ethnography in Budapest presents collection work of Szinte Gábor (1855–1914). The exhibit is to run from April 17, 2015 to February 28, 2016. Szinte was a drawing teacher and was one of those active doing fieldwork and collection in the developing field of ethnography at the end of the 19th and beginning of the 20th century. The exhibit features his research on carved wooden Székely gates and wooden churches and his photographs and drawings. By curators Bata Tímea and Tasnádi Zsuzsanna.
Report on Bodza Klára’s record release concerts held Budapest in February and December of 2015 at the Hungarian Heritage House and Jesuit Cultural Center respectively. The recording, entitled “Ó, áldott Szűzanya!” [Oh, Blessed Virgin Mary!], is a collection of religious folk music. Folk singer Bodza Klára has been active as a performer and singing teacher since the 1960s. Her new recording is a collaboration with many friends, musicians and artists from both folk and old music circles. By Szarvas István – first published January 5th, 2016 at www.hetedhet.hu.
A prayer unheard – the Catholic Church’s role in causing the Moldavian Csángó Hungarians to loose their mother tongue. This examines the history of the Roman Catholic Church’s presence in the Csángó communities in Moldavia from the 16th century to the present. Religion is and has always been very important in the life of the Csángó people. A main issue is whether or not (mostly not) this ethnic group has been able to hear mass in their mother tongue. By Sándor Klára.
Interview with Sebő Ferenc – on Hungarian Folk music. This interview well demonstrates Sebő’s deep understanding, perspective and vast knowledge of Hungarian traditional music; he was one of the initiators of the dance house movement. Here he identifies and describes Hungarian folk music within the context of the world, Europe, Central/Eastern Europe and in its local (Hungarian) environment. Includes summary of Hungarian folk music research and its status today; and description and status of the dance house movement. By Rácz Judit first published in Magyar Narancs 2015/51.
Csallóköz Hungarian Folk Dance Ensemble – 60th Anniversary Performance. Csallóköz / Veľký Žitný ostrov is the name of the island and region in the southwestern corner of Slovakia. The dance group, named for this region, was formed in 1954 in the town of Pozsonypüspüki (now part of Bratislava) and is now based in Dunaszerdahely / Dunajská Streda, where the anniversary performance was held. The group performed 5 choreographies from the ensemble’s repertoire. Directors of the group are Oláh Attila and Kovács Anita. Report by Takács András.
Interview with Brauer-Benke József on Hungarian folk instruments, other folk instruments, their research and what qualifies as an ‘ancient’ instrument. Includes information on the tárogató, cymbalom, tilinkó, zither and more. By Zubreczki Dávid from Stenk – index.hu 2015. 11. 17.
New Publication on the history and types of folk instruments found amongst peoples of the Carpathian Basin. The book grew out of ethnographer and folk instrument researcher Brauer-Benke József’s PhD dissertation of similar title. It was published in 2014 by MTA BTK Institute of Musicology. Book release was on November 19th, 2015. Recommendation by Pávai István.
The Páva Children’s Folk Talent Contest, held in 2015, was sponsored by Hungarian Television, Hungarian Heritage House and Heritage Children’s Folk Arts Association. Contestants arrived from all over Hungary and Hungarian communities outside of Hungary’s borders. The first round of selection chose 319 productions (of young Hungarian folk dancers and musicians between the ages of 6 and 14) from the 560 submitted entries. After a series of regional pre-selections, finalists were selected by the jury of folk experts. The finalists competed on 6 shows broadcast on Hungarian television in the fall of 2015, culminating with selection of final winners in mid December. Report by Sándor Ildikó – program professional advising officer.
The estate of the late Béla Halmos (1946–2013) musician, key personality of the dance house movement and ethnomusicologist is now accessible via the Hungarian Heritage House website. Béla’s estate consisting of materials for his dance house archive project, ethnographic research, manuscripts, photographs, a portion of his library and his violin were purchased from his heirs by the Hungarian Heritage House in 2014. It has taken a year and half to do the initial work of inventory, organizing, cataloging and digitalizing the materials; analysis of the materials is yet to be done. Ethnomusicologist Árendás Péter led the project at the Folklore Document Library and Archive at the Hungarian Heritage House. Printed here is an interview with Árendás about the project and nature of the materials. By Adonyi Adrienn.
New Publication: “Maácz”. Editors: Fügedi, János – Szélpál-Bajtai, Éva. L’Harmattan Kiadó/ MTA BTK Institute of Musicology. Budapest. 2015. ISBN 978 963 968 917 4. Maácz László (1929–1998) was an ethnographer, museologist, dance critic and dance writer, enduring editor of the Táncművészet (Dance Culture) magazine. This book is a collection of selected writings by and about Maácz. A tribute to him and his work. Announcement by Szőnyi Vivien.
Wet towel, wet sheet. In the old days in the Transylvanian village of Szék / Sic the way to bring down a fever was to wrap a child in a wet sheet or a wet towel. Then pray, repeat the process if necessary and pray some more – and hope the child doesn’t get pneumonia. A child that lives through 4 rounds of pneumonia, will live to a ripe old age and won’t be sickly – or, as the saying goes – ‛will live as long as the rocks’. Selected from Kocsis Rózsi’s memoires (born in Szék 1932 / died 1999), published by Juhos Kiss Sándor, Juhos-Kiss János.