English Table of Contents 2008/5
Fikó Regina, hit-cello player (wife of the late Zerkula János - Gyimes fiddler), passed away on November 2, 2008. Rest in peace.
Novák Ferenc’ (choreographer, long-time director of the Honvéd Ensemble) account of his fi rst trip to Szék (Sic, Transylvania, Romania) in 1958 to do field collection work on the dance there. Novák went to Szék upon the recommendation of dance researcher Martin György because no research on dance had yet been done there. At that time there was no public transportation to Szék at all, one had to walk in, more than 10km. This account was first published in 1960 in the June issue of Néptáncos. Novák wrote his thesis in university on the dances of Szék [’The societal role of dance in Szék’] which has since been published by Planétás Press as a chapter in the book entitled ’A széki hangszeres népzene’ [’Instrumental Folk Music in the Village Szék’].
folkMAGazin’s special issue In memory of Vargyas Lajos. Edited by Szőkéné Károlyi Annamária and Vargyas Gábor. Vargyas Lajos, Hungarian ethnografer, ethnomusicologist, dance researcher, died on October 11, 2007: this special issue of folkMAGazin honors him and his work, focusing especially on Vargyas’ connection with the village of Áj [Háj] in southern Slovakia, using Vargyas’ autobiography (published in 1993, Szépirodalmi Press, Budapest) as a point of departure.
Report on the dance festival held on October 4, 2008 in the tiny village (400 residents) of Vice [Viţa] in the northern Mezőség region of Transylvania. This folk dance and song meeting, mainly of local groups, was held this year for the 13th time and has helped to keep the dance tradition alive in the region. This year a choreography performed by the Harghita Székely Folk Dance Ensemble brought the dances of Vice alive (especially the men’s dance ) – the piece is based on archival fi lms made in 1971 of the dances of Vice. Report by Vice Parish priest /psychologist, Lőrinczi Károly
Announcement for launch of a website including a collection of tales about Hungary’s Renaissance King - Matthias Corvinus (1456-1490) – told in Hungarian. (http://matyasmesek.oszk.hu/) Report by Kóka Rozália
Bognár Szilvia is one of the most popular young singers in Budapest’s dance house movement today. Her new solo recording will be released sometime in November 2008. She sings traditional folk music, old music and mixtures of contemporary rock and folk. Check her discography in the Hungarian article. Interview by Erdélyi T. László
This issue’s literary column: poetry by Mesics György ’Mesó’ who is also a fiddler.
The Hajdú Dance Ensemble celebrated their 55th anniversary in Debrecen October 11-18, 2008. More than 400 dancers took part in the celebration. Present directors of the ensemble: Lovas Bálint and Tiszai Zsuzsa. Report by Krakkó Ákos
Part I. The story of Rajec Molnár Erzsébet – born in the city of Pozsony (Bratislava) in 1931. Her father was Hungarian (a tailor), her mother was ethnically German. After WW II, her family was uprooted and deported to Hungary, like many, many families simply because they were Hungarians. This part of the story tells about her childhood and schooling in Pozsony, their deportation, relocation in Budapest where she finished high school and then started working as an interpreter. As told to Kóka Rozália
Report on Szinavölgyi Dance Workshop’s performance in Miskolc on October 18, 2008 (Artistic directors : Kiss Anita and Maródi Attila). The amateur group’s exceptional performance of turning dances is praised here: ’...the dancers turn with extraordinary confidence...’. The accompanying band, Tényleg Band, was also complimented. This report also offered an opportunity for the writer to put in a few comments on general lack of public support for folk dance groups. By Demarcsek György
Szeredás Band celebrated their 15th anniversary on September 27th in Debrecen at an event which included performances by Boka Gábor, Bodrog Folk Dance Ensemble, Hajdú, Főnix and Szélrózsa folk dance ensembles, the Csík Band, Burány Trió and Szalonna and his band. Ethnographer Darmos István looks back on 14 years of working with the band.
The Kaláka Festival is a world music festival that happens every year the second weekend in July, in the city of Miskolc, with most of the events held in the ruins of a castle in Diósgyőr on the outskirts of town. The Kaláka Band, who started the festival, play there every year and still participate in organizing the festival. Kaláka Band itself is an institution in Hungary, they play folk music and several generations have grown up on their music. The festival usually hosts several bands from outside of Hungary and a long line-up of the biggest names in Hungarian traditional, folk and world music. Plans are already underway for the 2009 Kaláka Festival, and the festival’s 30th anniversary. Given the economic situation here in Hungary, there is less and less public funding available to support these kinds of events, so the 2009 festival is planning a great program of Hungarian bands (rather than bringing bands from abroad). Report by K. Tóth László
Review: Prophet from the past: more information on Molnár István’s work and personality. In his time, Molnár’s work was often at odds with the cultural policies of the political powers. Performances of his choreographies Dobozi csárdás and Marosszéki táncok by the Honvéd Dance Theatre and the Hungarian State Folk Dance Ensemble respectively, in the September 16th anniversary program, are praised as having been ’exceptionally inspired’. Unfortunately nowadays Molnár’s works are not part of the regular repertoire of any of the dance ensembles. By Fuchs Lívia – appeared in Élet és Irodalom, 2008 Sept. 26.