György Kurtág

Composer

György Kurtág

1926

György Kurtág was born in Lugoj in the Banat region, Romania. In 1946, he began his studies at the Franz Liszt Academy of Music in Budapest, where he met his wife, Márta, and also György Ligeti, who became a close friend. His piano teacher at the academy was Pál Kadosa; he studied composition with Sándor Veress and Ferenc Farkas, chamber music with Leo Weiner, and theory with Lajos Bárdos. He graduated in piano and chamber music in 1951 and received his degree in composition in 1955.

Following the Hungarian uprising in 1956, Kurtág’s time in Paris between 1957 and 1958 was of critical importance for him. Here, he studied with Max Deutsch, Olivier Messiaen and Darius Hilhaud. During this time however, Kurtag was suffering from a severe depression: 'I realized to the point of despair that nothing I had believed to constitute the world was true...'. Kurtág received psychological therapy from Marianne Stein – an encounter that revivified the composer and strongly stimulated his artistic development. During this time he also discovered the works of Anton Webern and the plays of Samuel Beckett. The String Quartet he composed in 1959 after his return to Budapest marks this crucial turning point; he refers to this piece as his Opus 1. He dedicated it to his therapist, Stein.

Between 1960 and 1968, he worked as répétiteur at the National Philharmonia in Budapest. In 1967, he was appointed professor of piano and later also of chamber music at the Franz Liszt Academy, where he taught until 1993.

Read more here: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Gy%C3%B6rgy_Kurt%C3%A1g

Song List

This list is likely to be of songs that have been performed at Oxford International Song Festivals and Oxford Song events, and may not be comprehensive of this composer's compositions. This database is ever growing as a work in progress, with further songs regularly being added.

Hommage à Robert Schumann (1990) Op. 15d György Kurtág

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