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Iván Fischer and guests representing Hungary in the ARTE series


Iván Fischer and guests representing Hungary in the ARTE series

Singing children, Iván Fischer, Ferenc Snétberger and other musicians represented Hungary in the Europe@Home series of cultural channel ARTE. The program series, available online, provides a taste of the musical heritage of European countries.

The latest episode in the Europe@Home series of cultural channel ARTE introduced viewers to Hungary’s musical heritage through a live conversation with Iván Fischer and the music of Ferenc Snétberger. Launched in February, the program invites musical representatives of the countries of Europe to the Berlin living room of violinist Daniel Hope each weekend, where together they listen to or play typical pieces and discuss the musical traditions of the particular country. As Hope himself explains: “Although I grew up in Great Britain and English is my mother tongue, I was always a committed European. I would like to see music lending expression to those European ideals that are more important than ever at a time when our culture is under fire. ARTE is the voice of European culture. So let’s make that voice heard!”

The March 28 broadcast featured the musical director of the Budapest Festival Orchestra: Iván Fischer spoke, among other things, about the Kodály method, the history of the cimbalom and the willingness of his orchestra to experiment with new things. Ferenc Snétberger performed a guitar improvisation. The English-language program featured a recording of Jenő Lisztes’s cimbalom music; Hungarian folk music and the Scherzo movement of Mahler’s Symphony No. 7 performed by the BFO; and a choral piece performed by students of the Zoltán Kodály Primary, Secondary and Music School. Lastly, the host, Daniel Hope, accompanied by pianist Jacques Ammon, performed two movements of Iván Fischer’s Dance Suite.

Hungary has a fantastically rich musical culture thanks to the visionary work of composer and music educator Zoltán Kodály. He has developed a teaching method that helps all children to sing in tune and to read music. The Kodály method is a success story which Hungary could share with the rest of Europe.”, Iván Fischer told the program, available for viewing on the ARTE website until the end of June.

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