MusingMuso Posted March 1, 2006 Share Posted March 1, 2006 Sometime during 2003 (I think it was late summer) I started to get interested in the organs, organ-music and organists of Eastern Europe, as you probably all know. It has been a fascinating (and ongoing) journey of discovery, and about a year ago I stumbled across a remarkable improvisation or two; especially one played by Julian Gemablaski in Poland. However, I lost one of the best from my sound-files, but now rejoice in the fact that I have re-discovered it. I have previously mentioned Czech organs, organists and composers, but Hungary remains something of an untapped subject for me in so-far as the organ-music and performers are concerned. Nevertheless, certain things creep out of the organ-case from time to time, and the Hungarian organist Istvan Ruppert was one such discovery. As I have started to lift the lid on Hungary to some extent, I have become aware of a quite extraordinary depth. Hungary certainly has organs....very large organs indeed.....in the various Basilicas and Concert Halls, in places like Budapest, Koscial, Eeger and Szeged. The style of organ-building seems to follow or at least be influenced by both German and Parisian cultural strains, in a quite interesting way. Indeed, Budapest is something of an organ mecca, judging by the amount of organ-concerts which take place there. As in England, there is a certain diversity of religious influences, which include Lutheran, Roman Catholic and Jewish traditions....a rich source of tunes and influences. This was the country which spawned Feranc Liszt of course, and a school of keyboard virtuosity second to none. My brother, who travels quite extensively as a scientist, tells me that, of all the academic establishments, it is the Hungarian ones he is most wary of; more Nobel Prizes awarded to Hungary than anywhere else, apparently. So enter the name of a young organist/improviser/clarinetist and composer, by the name of Bálint Karosi; a name which may mean something to some on this board, due to the fact that he was the winner of the Dublin Organ Competition in 2001, studied with Lionel Rogg and is now all of 26 years of age. The organ playing samples to be heard on his web-site are impressive enough, but a few things I found outstanding. Especially interesting are three improvisations; the first of which is quite an extraordinary and unique one. His own Toccata is also to be heard as a part sample, and this too is very interesting and exciting, but fiendishly virtuosic by the sounds of it. The use of rhythm is especially vivid, and I would certainly like to hear more of this work. It sounds like the sort of technique is required for which the Liszt "Ad nos" is but a limbering-up Etude on the way! Go to the following site, check this young virtuoso out, and don't miss the recordings; especially the improvisation "Által mennék", which I think must be based on some old folk-tune or other....maybe. I never liked the bagpipes before! As my brother suggest, the Hungarians can be quite scary, and this young man is good....very, very good! http://karosi.orgona.org/index_en.htm MM PS: There is another young organist/pianist, who gives concerts of the WHOLE organ/piano works of Liszt.....eeeeek! Link to comment Share on other sites More sharing options...
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