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Classical | Opera | Folk | Operetta | Jazz | Gypsy | Popular | Places | Tickets | Music related events
Classical music
It is no exaggeration to say that the musical landscape would be very different without Hungary's contribution.
Between them, BARTÓK Béla, ERKEL Ferenc, KODÁLY Zoltán, LIGETI György, LISZT Ferenc revolutionised the performance, composition and teaching of classical music all over the globe.
Artists to keep an eye on:
GYÖRGY Ádám - pianist, known from New York to Jakarta
FISCHER Iván - conductor, he won the Rupert Foundation competition in 1976, invitations to most British orchestras, world tour with the London Symphony Orchestra in 1982, founder of the Budapest Festival Orchestra
KOCSIS Zoltán - one of the world's top pianists; now specialises in conducting, most notably as Music Director of the National Philharmonic Orchestra.
SCHIFF András - Hungary's top pianist now lives in Britain and is best known for his exquisite interpretations of Bach, Haydn and Mozart
ILLÉNYI Katica - Hungarian jazz musician and violinist playing classical pieces, world famous movie soundtracks and evergreens, furthermore, she is the Cultural and Good Ambassador of Hungarian Red Cross
Hungarian opera singers are among the best in the world, and MARTON Éva, MIKLÓSA Erika, ROST Andrea are just as likely to pull a full house at the New York Met or Milan's Scala as the Hungarian State Opera House.
Folk music
Hungarian folk music and dance can still be enjoyed on festivals, concerts or in dance houses (in Hungarian: táncház) full of young peolple.
Artists to keep an eye on:
Besh o droM - colourful mixture of Transylvanian, Jewish, Afghan, Egyptian, Lebanese, Armenian, Bulgarian, Romanian, Macedonian and Greek musical traditions
Csík Band - an authentic performer of Hungarian folk music, lately they are mixing folk music and rock music in such an interesting and successful way that we can claim a new genre was born
Muzsikás Hungarian Folk Music Ensemble - the most renowned and popular Hungarian folkmusic ensemble worldwide
LAJKÓ Félix - energetic violinist, inspired by a fusion of folk, jazz, Gypsy and Jewish klezmer sounds
PALYA Beáta - a young folk music singer
SEBESTYÉN Márta - internationally-renowned folk singer
Devotees of lighter music know that there are many Hungarians among the operetta greats. The works of Imre Kálmán, Ferenc Lehár and Jenő Huszka are regularly performed in theatres around the country side by side with the operettas of Offenbach and Strauss.
Hungarian jazz musicians appear at all the international festivals as invited guests. The popularity of the genre is proven in that during the summer Budapest provides free open-air concerts nearly every weekend.
Artists to keep an eye on:
HARCSA Veronika - performed at numerous festivals in Hungary, Japan, Germany, Austria, Italy, Belgium, Switzerland, France, Israel, Slovakia, Serbia and Romania. Her album Speak Low became No.1 selling album in the vocal jazz charts of Tower Records Japan
Roby LAKATOS - a virtuoso violinist equally comfortable playing classical, jazz and his local brand of folk, descended from a legendary family of Roma musicians
SZABADOS György - one of the pioneers of Hungarian jazz in the seventies, for more information on the musicians he helped inspire, visit
Gypsy music
Performances of Gypsy music, an organic part of Hungary's musical culture, by the Budapest Gypsy Symphony Orchestra or the Rajkó Orchestra are assured continual full houses both at home and abroad. In addition, some Hungarian restaurants feature Gypsy music. For more information please visit our Dining out section.
Lovers of roma folk music will love Parno Graszt.
Popular music
Several musical festivals had been started in the last 15 years on the basis of the developing youth culture. Sziget Festival (Budapest) is worldwide known, presenting world-class performers from all genres. VOLT Festival (Sopron) is the second-largest music festival in Hungary, it is is considered to be the "cheaper version" of Sziget. Hegyalja Festival (Tokaj) invites mainly hard rock and rock formations, but many more genres are present. Don't miss Balaton's newest feature, Balaton Sound at Hungary's fanciest beach, Zamárdi, along the shore of Lake Balaton. BalaTone, another major event near Lake Balaton is held in Zánka.
Artists to keep an eye on:
Balkan Fanatik - electornic-folk-rap, featuring Prophet, the L.A. rapper
KIRÁLY Linda - American Hungarian singer-songwriter, sings both in English and in Hungarian
Pannonia All Stars Ska Orchestra - traditional ska spiced up with Hungarian motifs
Yonderboi - young composer, producer, performing indie music
Žagar - electronic, they have already played in Austria, Germany, The Netherlands, Italy, Slovakia, Czeh Republic and Russia
A38 Ship - contemporary music, jazz, world music, folk, rock and electronic music
Liszt Academy of Music - classical music, opera
Palace of Arts - classical music, jazz, world music, popular music,dance performances
State Opera House - classical music, opera
Hungária Koncert - folk music concerts, e.g. Hungarian State Folk Ensemble, Danube Folk Ensemble and the Rajkó Folk Ensemble
Jegymester – opera, jazz, classical music, dance and more
V.I.P. Arts Management - classical music concerts, e.g. New Year’s Eve Opera Bal, Budapest Philharmonic Orchestra, 100 Member Gypsy Orchestra