JURY

Miklós LUKÁCS

Miklós Lukács is one of the world’s most active and versatile cimbalom players. Contemporary music, jazz, and the folk music of different cultures create a perfect symbiosis in his artistry. Several cimbalom pieces have been composed for him as a performer, including Da Capo by Péter Eötvös, the cimbalom concerto Sounds of Generations Y-Part II by Máté Bella, as well as cimbalom concertos by Kornél Fekete-Kovács, Béla Szakcsi Lakatos, Kálmán Oláh, Kristóf Bacsó, György Vukán, and Mihály Borbély’s Double Concerto for cimbalom and tárogató.

Througout his career so far, Lukács has been the soloist of prestigious orchestras like the BBC Symphony Orchestra, Orchestre de la Suisse Romande, RAI National Symphony Orchestra, Philharmonisches Staatsorchester Hamburg, ORF Vienna Radio Symphony Orchestra, Remix Ensemble, Israel Contemporary Players, Ensemble Musikfabrik, Ligeti Ensemble, UMZE Ensemble, and THReNSeMBle. He played with such jazz greats as Charles Lloyd, Archie Shepp, Steve Coleman, Bill Frisell, Chris Potter, Uri Caine, and Frank London. His performance can be heard on over 50 albums, a third of which features him as the band leader. His concerts and releases are regularly reviewed not only in the international and Hungarian music press but in publications such as The New York Times, Chicago Tribune, and The Guardian. Since 2001, Lukács has been teaching at the Rajkó-Talentum Dance and Music Art School, and he was a lecturer at the Snétberger Music Talent Center. He was awarded with the prizes for Hungarian Heritage and Hungarian Arts, in addition to being a two-time Artisjus and Gramofon Award winner.

Kálmán BALOGH

One of the most renowned cimbalom players of our age. He has performed all over the world, not only with folk musicians but with symphonic and jazz orchestras and contemporary music ensembles as well.

Balogh started to play the cimbalom at the age of eleven. His first teacher was his uncle, Elemér Balogh, then Beatrix Szöllős. Later on he studied at the Ferenc Liszt Academy of Music as a pupil of Ferenc Gerencsér. He graduated in 1980 at the dulcimer, solfeggio and singing-teacher department.

At the beginning of his career he was mainly engaged in folk music. He has performed with almost every band which plays authentic Hungarian music, for instance the ensembles Jánosi, Ökrös, Téka, Méta, Mákvirág, Muzsikás, Vízöntő, Zsarátnok, Vasmalom, Fonó, and Üsztürü. He was on tour in Germany for months with Sándor Kuti and Sándor Budai with the Magneten Gypsy Show (directed by André Heller), he was also the music director of the show.

Kálmán Balogh has been affected by contemporary music as well, since he had many concerts with the New Music Workshop of Miskolc, Group 180 and István Márta. He has performed with various jazz formations as well, like the BDS Collection (Béla Szakcsi Lakatos, Gyula Babos, László Dés), Improvocation (Arnie Somogyi, Tony Lakatos), Quartet B (Mihály Borbély), Dresch Quartet, Archie Shepp, György Vukán, Ágnes Lakatos and Budapest Ragtime Band. He played the János Háry suit by Kodály with such famous symphonic orchestras as the Brooklyn, Philadelphia, Miami, Tallin and Madrid Symphonics.

He won the title The Young Master of Folk Art in 1985, and he was awarded with the eMeRTon Prize in 1999 and the Artisjus Prize in December 2005.

Péter EÖTVÖS

Composer, conductor and teacher: the Hungarian Peter Eötvös combines all three functions in one very high-profile career, he is one of the best known interpreters and professors of 20/21 century music.
Born in Transylvania in 1944, he has long been considered one of the most significant and influential personalities on the music scene as both an internationally recognized conductor and a composer of successful operas, orchestral works and concertos, written for well-known artists from all over the world.
He received diplomas from Budapest Academy of Music (composition) and Hochschule für Musik in Cologne (conducting). Between 1968 and 1976 he performed regularly with the Stockhausen Ensemble. From 1971 to 1979 he collaborated with the electronic music studio of the Westdeutscher Rundfunk in Cologne.
In 1978, at the invitation of Pierre Boulez, he conducted the inaugural concert of IRCAM in Paris, and was subsequently named musical director of the Ensemble InterContemporain, a post he held until 1991.
From 1985–1988 he was Principal Guest Conductor of the BBC Symphony Orchestra.
He was appointed First Guest Conductor at the Budapest Festival Orchestra from 1992-1995, at National Philharmonic Orchestra (Budapest) from 1998–2001. Chief Conductor of the Radio Chamber Orchestra of Hilversum from 1994 to 2005, First Guest conductor of the Stuttgart Radio Symphony Orchestra 2003-2005, and Principal Guest Conductor, Modern and Contemporary Repertoire at Gothenburg Symphony Orchestra from 2003 to 2007. From 2009 to 2012 he was First Guest Conductor at Radio Symphony Orchestra in Vienna. Other Orchestras he has worked with include the most important Radio Orchestras in Europe, the Royal Concertgebouw Orchestra, Berlin Philharmonic Orchestra, Munich Philharmonic Orchestra, London Philharmonia, Wiener Philharmoniker, Cleveland Orchestra and NHK Orchestra Tokyo.
He has also worked in opera houses including La Scala Milan, the Royal Opera House Covent Garden and La Monnaie Brussels, Festival Opera Glyndebourne, Theatre du Chatelet Paris, with directors including Luca Ronconi, Robert Altman, Klaus-Michael Grüber, Robert Wilson, Nikolaus Lehnhof, Ushio Amagatsu.
Eötvös attaches great importance to passing on his extensive knowledge and experience to others. From 1992–98 he was professor at the Hochschule für Musik in Karlsruhe, and from 1998–2001 at Cologne's Hochschule für Musik. He returns to his post at the Musikhochschule Karlsruhe between 2002–2007. In 1991 he founded the International Eötvös Institute and Foundation, in 2004 the Eötvös Contemporary Music Foundation in Budapest for young conductors and composers. Besides helping conductors and composers, he undertook the supporting and promoting of young artists, assist and support their career into the music industry through organizing workshops, courses, international projects and mentor program.
He is member of the Akademie der Künste in Berlin, Szechenyi Academy of Art in Budapest, Sächsische Akademie der Künste in Dresden, Royal Swedish Academy of Music Stockholm, Royal Flemish Academy of Belgium and Honorary Academician at Santa Cecilia, Roma.
His many compositions (e.g. Atlantis, zeroPoints, Shadows, Levitation, Jet Stream, Seven, DoReMi, Speaking drums) and 10 operas (for example: Three sisters, Le Balcon, Angels in America, Love and Other Demons, Lilith, Golden Dragon) are regularly performed throughout the world.
The 2014/16 seasons saw the performances of Eötvös´s new opera Senza sangue, commissionded by the New York Philharmonic and Kölner Philharmonie. His oratorio “Halleluja” was premiered in Salzburg Festival in 2016, composed on the base of Peter Esterhazy text. In 2017 his new orchestra piece “Alle vittime senza nome” was premiered in La Scala Milano, commissioned by four Italian orchestras.
In 2018 he has been awarded with the prestigious Goethe Medal in Germany.
His works have been recorded by BMC, BIS AG, DGG, ECM, KAIROS, col legno, Naive and his music is published by Editio Musica (Budapest), Ricordi (Berlin), Salabert (Paris), Schott Music (Mainz).

Gergely FAZEKAS

Gergely Fazekas, PhD (1977) is a musicologist and editor. He studied literature and philosophy at Eötvös Loránd University and musicology at the Liszt Academy, where as associate professor he teaches 17th and 18th century music history, postmodern musicology and music analysis. Between 2012 and 2017 he was the editor-in-chief of the oldest Hungarian music publisher Rózsavölgyi & Co (founded in 1850). From 2013 to 2017 he was the artistic director of the youth programs of the Liszt Academy. He has been writing program notes, concert reviews, articles about music in a wide array of journals, magazines and web-sites since 2003. He has been publishing scholarly articles in Hungarian, English and French musicological journals on Bach and Debussy since 2007. His Hungarian translation of all the writings and interviews of Claude Debussy was published in September 2017, his book based on his doctoral theses entitled “J. S. Bach and the two cultures of musical form” was published in Hungarian in June 2018. As a Fulbright visiting professor he spent the academic year 2017/2018 at Bard College (NY) with his wife and three children.

Ágnes SZAKÁLY

Cimbalom player Ágnes Szakály graduated from the Ferenc Liszt College of Music in 1974.

Her solo concerts, radio and TV broadcasts have made her known in all countries of Europe, Japan and Mexico. She has made a number of records and CDs and many contemporary composers have written works for her, including 14 cimbalom concertos.

She has played with many renowned orchestras (the Scala Orchestra of Milan, the Berlin Philharmonic, Vienna Symphony, Baden-Baden SWRF Orchestra, Leipzig Gewandhaus Orchestra, Leipzig Radio Orchestra, Torino RAI, Klangforum Wien, the Oslo Opera House Orchestra, La Fenice Orchestra of Venice, Hanover Radio Orchestra, Mexico City Philharmonic Orchestra, the Chamber Orchestra of Europe), and she has been the guest of the National Philharmonic Orchestra and the Budapest Festival Orchestra.

Ágnes Szakály has worked under the direction of many distinguished conductors, including Kurt Masur, Michael Gielen, Serge Baudo, Dmitri Kitajenko, Eliahu Inbal, David Zimmermann, Kent Nagano, Ken-Ichiro Kobayashi, Sylvain Cambreling, Arturo Tamayo, Zoltán Peskó, Ádám Fischer, Tamás Vásáry and Zoltán Kocsis.

She has received the Artisjus Prize of the Association of Hungarian composers ten times for the performance of contemporary works. In 1993 she received the Liszt Prize for her activity, in 1997 the Németh László Prize for her work in music pedagogy and in 2010 Knight's Cross Order of Merit of the Republic of Hungary.

András SZALAI

He studied at the Bartók Béla Secondary School of Music, Cimbalom Department from 1999 to 2003, at the Liszt Ferenc Academy of Music, Cimbalom Department between 2003 and 2008 and at the Composition Department from 2004 to 2009. He's been a DLA student at the Academy since 2014.
His interests are focused on 20th century and contemporary music performance. Over the past 10 years he has performed or presented solo and chamber works by numerous Hungarian contemporary composers.
He places particular emphasis on presenting the works of young composers. He has taken part in all the composers’ competitions of the New Hungarian Music Forum; earlier he participated (as composer and as performer) in all the Youth Contemporary Music Evenings. He is a significant performer of works written for the cimbalom by György Kurtág, who composed a solo piece for him in October 2009.
He has performed at the Budapest Spring Festival, the Szombathely Bartók Seminar and the Kaposfest on numerous occasions, both as soloist and as chamber musician. In the past few years he has attended virtually all the Festivals of Music of Our Age and the New Hungarian Works concert cycle. He is a frequent guest at European music festivals. He regularly plays early music arrangements at his concerts.
He has played together with the Slovene, Warsaw, Cracow, Łodz, Valencia Philharmonic Orchestras, the Helsinki Avanti chamber orchestra, and virtually all the symphony orchestras of Hungary. He has worked with conductors Olivier Cuendet, Péter Eötvös, János Fürst, András Keller, Zoltán Kocsis, János Kovács, Ingo Metzmacher, Zoltán Rácz, Zsolt Serei, István Silló, László Tihanyi, Gergely Vajda, Tamás Vásáry, Walter Weller, Antoni Wit; and performers such as Gábor Csalog, Csaba Klenyán, Claire Chase, Evelyn Glennie, Helena Winkelmann and Natalia Zagorinskaya.
Since 2008, he teaches composition, solfège, music theory, transposition, and score reading at the King St Stephen Secondary School of Music. He is a regular musician with the UMZE Chamber Ensemble, Hungarian National Philharmonic, Hungarian Radio and Television Symphony Orchestra, Concerto Budapest and ORF Radio-Symphonieorchester Wien.
He became a member of the Ludium ensemble led by Gábor Csalog and András Kemenes in 2010.
Since 2015, he is a lecturer of chamber music at the Liszt Ferenc Academy of Music.
In 2009, he received the Artisjus Prize.
Since 2017, he is a lecturer of cimbalom and chamber music at the Liszt Ferenc Academy of Music.