...a country (Hungary) whose population, even today, is barely over ten million has produced so many musicians and so much outstanding music. I am grateful for having been born and trained there.

Sir Georg Solti

Organ Sub-Department’s Visit in Hajdúböszörmény

11. September 2018

The organ built by the Angster Organ Manufacturing Company in 1914 debuted in the Reformed church at Kálvin Square, Hajdúböszörmény in the autumn of 2016, following an exemplary restoration process performed by the AerisOrgona Ltd. The instrument has great significance both as a monument and as a historical token, as it was the very last product of the golden era of the Pécs-based organ manufacturing firm, the last grand organ produced by the company before the First World War, which is one of the most important Late Romantic organs in Europe, not only due to its structure but also its sound and refined artwork. The newly inaugurated organ is hugely successful, since it has been played in celebrated concerts not only by Hungarian but also by world-renowned international organists in the last two years, all of them speaking very highly of the beautiful instrument. Two instructors of the Organ sub-department, Balázs Szabó and László Fassang greatly would greatly contribute to the preparation process of the restoration work, and following the amicable relations developed during this period, the town and the Reformed congregation welcomed all students and tutors of the Organ sub-department for a few days in August, 2016. At the end of their stay, the guests gave a full-house concert on the restored Angster-organ. Encouraged by this extraordinary event, MP János Bertalan, elder of the Reformed church enhanced further connections between the Organ sub-department and the town of Hajdúböszörmény. Thanks to this initiative, we were again welcomed in the town for three days this September. Board and lodging of the entire group were funded by the town council.


Visiting the organ in Hajdúböszörmény

These three days enabled us to make best use of the organ: we practised day and night on the fantastic instrument, playing our summer repertoires, freely discussing them in a group.  On 6 September, a gala concert was given to hundreds of people, featuring not only the academics of the department but also the students deemed best. In the Bocskai Square Reformed church, we also had the opportunity to take a look at the other – once exquisite - organ of the town, which, however, still awaits restoration - Within the framework of the fieldwork of the subject “Organology” held by Balázs Szabó, the students could also participate in the assessment and systematisation process of the organ parts.  A round-table discussion with the title “Organist positions in Hungary” was not only attended by the academic staff and students of the Organ sub-department of the Liszt Academy but also by the mayor of Hajdúböszörmény, the director of the local music school as well as by the Vicar of the Kálvin Square Reformed congregation. In addition to the academic and music activities, we also had the chance to get to know one another more deeply, to build the group and to benefit from the local youth sport centre.


István Ruppert


Visiting the organ in Hajdúböszörmény