Hungarian Gems 3 / Kodály / Rózsa / Bartók

KODÁLY Ballet Music (Dragon’s Dance) from Háry János, for orchestra
MIKLÓS RÓZSA Cello Concerto, op. 32
BARTÓK The Wooden Prince, BB. 74


Featuring: Ildikó Szabó cello
Conductor: Domonkos Héja

In 1926, audiences of the first three performances of Háry János could see the scene in which the   daughter of the emperor Maria Louisa throws herself into the abyss out of despair. However, Kodály deleted the entire scene for dramaturgical reasons, thus the ballet part put in its place, the Dragon’s Dance, was similarly lost. Fortunately, the music from the scene titled Ballet music survived and while rarely played, it makes a concert all the more interesting when it is. Another ‘rare visitor’ is the Cello Concerto (1971) by Budapest-born legendary Hollywood film director Miklós Rózsa, which was commissioned and first played by János Starker. The hugely talented Ildikó Szabó, who is just in her mid-20s despite the fact that she has been giving concerts for close on two decades, takes the solo part of the work. Finally, the orchestra under the direction of Domonkos Héja, who is devoted to performing Hungarian music both at home and abroad, play a local masterpiece that is just over a century old: the music of Bartók’s single-act pantomime ballet.