English Table of Contents 2001/2
Between March 27 and April 2, 2001, a festival was organized in Budapest for professional dance ensembles and ensembles from outside of the Hungarian borders. The week culminated with a gala program at the State Opera House in celebration of the the State Ensemble's 50th anniversary. During the week there were workshops and performances by all participating ensembles with professional opinion offered after performances by Novák Ferenc, Zsuráfszky Zoltán and Sebő Ferenc. Participating ensembles: from Budapest: the Honvéd, Budapest, BM Duna and the State Ensembles. From Pozsony (Bratislava), the Szőttes and Ifjú Szívek. From Topolya the Cirkalom Ensemble. From Transylvania the Maros Ensemble, Udvarhely Dance Workshop, Haromszék Dance Ensemble and Hargita National Székely Folk Ensemble. From the Ukraine, the Derceni Gyöngyösbokréta. A comment made by spokesman for the Harghita ensemble regarding the authentic style: "Anyone who doesn't like it, should have ten mothers in law". Review by Záhonyi András
"Hagyományok Háza" - (house of tradition) – Charter of foundation The institution housed at Corvin tér 8 in Budapest has, as of January 1, 2001, been renamed and begun reorganization under a new governmental ruling as a "central budgetary organ" relating to the upkeep of State Folk Ensemble, the many arms of institutions surrounding it and the protection the [Hungarian] Folk Arts. The actual charter appears to have been printed here citing the law and related regulations, with 9 points and signature by Rockenbauer Zoltán Minister of National Cultural Heritage.
From táncház to remix Ghymes is a Hungarian band from Slovakia where the band members still live. In the wave of popularity of the dance house movement, they formed their band in 1983 and have been playing Hungarian folk music ever since. In this interview with Szarka Tamás, the band's lead violin player, there is a lot of discussion about the changing character of their music. Over the last couple of years the band has enjoyed more and more popularity amongst a wider and wider audience. Their most recent CD "Smaragdváros" [Emerald city] is being handled by EMI and is currently being distributed in six eastern countries. They are now number 11 on the radio world music hit lists. With their music they want to reach a wider and wider audience. As Szarka Tamás put it, "maybe we are dancing on a knife blade, because we are using a lot of drum and synthesizer....this is the way we like it." Interview by Abkarovits Endre
A review of the literature on traditional children's games of the Jászság region of central Hungary – east of Budapest. By Kocsán László of Jászberény
Sipos János's book "Kazakh Folksongs from Two Ends of the Steppe" has been published by the Akadémiai Kiadó in Budapest and judging by its English title, perhaps is even in English (though this does not become clear through the article here). It is accompanied by a CD with the most characteristic melodies collected on two research trips. The article printed here is gives us a taste of the author's trip to Mangistau in 1997 to do field research.
Soós János from the village of Szék gives some history and a description of the local custom for sending boys off to serve in the military. Roughly it consists of three days of singing and eating by the men and young men in the local pub, finally culminating with dancing, more eating at home and then at dawn the father accompanies his son to the central square of town where the new recruits gather and sing before setting off for their military service.
Sebestyén Márta was the guest of the Gajdos Klub in the town of Eger for an informal evening of conversation-interview and music in January 2001. During the evening, her childhood, her parents, how she met Sebő Ferenc and began to perform, the film music for "The English Patient" and the Deep Forest recording were subjects of conversastion. When asked what it is like to have such popularity, how much of a burden it has been and how it has changed her life, in reply Márta mentioned that "it's like, when someone is sitting in a room doing whatever they usually do and then one time a ray of light falls upon them". She is doing what she has always done and she still loves doing it. By Abkarovits Endre
Bartók's dream has been realized - the "Pátria" recordings Announcing 3 CD ROMs of Hungarian traditional music. Music recorded on gramophone by Bartók, Kodály and Lajtha – a project completed in the early 1940's – has now been released on CD ROM organized into the three larger dialect regions. Series editor: Sebő Ferenc
The Final Hour Project – Hungary series A comprehensive project to document traditional music still played by village bands from all over the Hungarian language area. The project began in 1997, first covering Transylvania, then continued with so-called "Felvidék" (Hungarian inhabited Slovakia) and shall ultimately include all Hungarian areas of the Carpathian Basin. The recording period is slated for completion in Dec. 2001. The project is hosted by the Fonó in Budapest, where the initial recordings and documentations are made of each band invited. See list in the Hungarian article of villages in process now. Project director - Kelemen László
Nostalgia concert in Debrecen The first of a series of folk music concerts in the town of Debrecen in northeastern Hungary. The underlying theme of this first concert seems to have been Rőmer Ottó's 50th birthday. Of all four bands (Délibab, Gereben, Karikás, Morotva) celebrated here, the common denominator was Rőmer Ottó, who has since 1970 been an active musician, music teacher and inspirational energy in the area. Article by Juhász Erika
A Hungarian's thoughts on returning from a trip to Ireland. For whatever reason, most Hungarians feel some sort of special kinship to the Irish and no one would pass up the opportunity to visit Ireland and then report back at home on their adventures. A few points from this article: The Hungarians say, "A nation lives in its language". It has also been said, "a nation lives in its music". In a country like Ireland that almost lost its native language, it has however kept its musical mother tongue....and music is in the people's blood, while at the same time they are espeically open to new, outside influences... By Abkarovits Endre