Musical Events in February

3 March 2020

The month of February was full of events at the Institute. Guests included a group of students and teachers from the British Kodály Academy, Fernando Malvar-Ruiz, choir conductor and artistic director of the Los Angeles Children's Chorus, and Professor Yinam Leef, president of the Jerusalem Academy of Music and Dance. 

The Study Tour in cooperation with the British Kodály Academy has brought students and teachers from the UK to Institute for more than 15 years now. The tour this year focused on early years music education, a workshop was given by Kata Asztalos, and included lesson observations in toddler, kindergarten and lower primary classes. 

Every year, the Institute organises a 3-5-day long programme called 'Special Week' in February when, instead of regular teaching, students have the opportunity to enjoy a variety of special lectures and workshops that do not fit into the regular timetable. Kodály Institute alumnus Fernando Malvar-Ruiz was one of the guest presenters this year. Mr. Malvar-Ruiz is presently the choir conductor and artistic director of the Los Angeles Children's Chorus, and he was music director of the American Boychoir for 13 years.

This year the city of Kecskemét and the Kodály Institute was the countryside host town of the Reconnections Chamber Music Project. Initiated in 2013, the aim of the Reconnections project is the realization of a series of chamber music workshops and joint concerts hosted in Budapest and Jerusalem in turn. One of the greatest challenges of the project is that participating students and professors meet for the first time at the beginning of the workshop, and thus the mixed chamber formations have a relatively short time to learn the musical pieces before performing at multiple venues with various audiences. At every occasion besides performing in Budapest and Jerusalem, the participants pay a visit to other cities as well, where they meet the local community and perform a concert. In Hungary after Pécs, Győr and Szeged this year Kecskemét hosted the Reconnections event.

Prof. Dr. Tamás Róna, Chief Rabbi, Head of the National Rabbinate Council welcomed the group led by Rector Prof. Yinam Leef from the Jerusalem Academy of Music and Dance, showed them around the Jewish heritage sites in Kecskemét and described the local congregation’s life. After a short sightseeing the guests from Jerusalem visited the Kodály Institute and were given some information about Kodály, his oeuvre, life and music pedagogy philosophy along with an introduction about the Kodály Institute, where an evening concert was held.

Chief Rabbi Róna brought the shofar of the local community to the concert and after his welcome words he played a few tunes. The full-house concert was received with an unbounded applause of the audience.

More information about the Reconnections project: