Klára Kokas Research Centre

The Klára Kokas Research Centre is an inter-institutional association/organisation hosted by the Kodály Institute of the Liszt Academy of Music (LFZE).

The Centre was launched in December 2016. It was established as a dedicated platform for interdisciplinary scholarly work on the internationally known music psychologist and pedagogue dr. Klára Kokas (1929-2010). The Centre drew substantial scholarly attention to the pedagogic inventions of Klára Kokas. It is currently inactive due to the retirement of its founding director, Dr Gabriella Deszpot in November 2019. During its active years, the Centre generated and extended a range of research activities with an impressive publication output and valuable public dissemination.


The Klára Kokas Research Centre’s main objective was to initiate and organise substantial scholarly work on the Kokas pedagogy. In particular, the Centre placed a special emphasis on researching the unique educational qualities of the Kokas pedagogy and interrogating its strong transdisciplinary relevance for contemporary theoretical and applied science (social sciences, learning sciences, musicology and creative arts). In conjunction with this, the Centre’s goal was to develop innovative research methodologies with a qualitative, phenomenological lens, and to make innovative use of audio-visual and digital data in the scientific inquiry on the immersive, experience-centred Kokas pedagogy.

  • The use of the Kokas archives for research and scholarly work (organisation and preparation of the archived content for research; identification of potential research foci).
  • The Kokas pedagogy and creativity (new empirical studies, innovative methods)
    • the use of the Kokas pedagogy as an explorative context  for the study of embodied teaching and learning and their fundamental role in knowledge building, social cohesion and co-creativity (How does the pedagogy nurture students’ shared creativity and imagination through collective movement?)
    • the development of transdisciplinary inquiry on musically inspired creativity, bringing together musicology, learning sciences, cognitive sciences and creativity research
  • Case studies on the Kokas pedagogy (different settings, different contexts and different uses)

RESEARCH ACTIVITIES (as of November 2019)

1. Active music education through singing and movement – innovative pedagogic approaches and their evaluation. (Gabriella Deszpot, Tamara Farnadi and Katalin Körtvési) – please also see the Active Music Learning Research Group.

2. Interpretive/thematic organisation of archived pedagogic records of Kokas sessions with children. (Gabriella Deszpot, Katalin Geréné Kristóf)

3. The development and evaluation of Kokas-sessions in tertiary education. Strategies for the complex documentation of the Kokas pedagogy through teacher feedback and student reflection. (Gabriella Deszpot and Katalin Körtvési) 

4. Facilitating creative habits of mind through embodied musical experiences - the Kokas pedagogy in music teacher education. (Eva Vass & Gabriella Deszpot)

5. Facilitating creative habits of mind through embodied musical experiences - the Kokas pedagogy in primary school music education. (Eva Vass & Gabriella Deszpot)

6. Religious spirituality and the concept of the child in the scholarly work of Klára Kokas. (Csilla Székely)

  • Gabriella Deszpot (the founding director of the Centre, Kodály Institute of the Liszt Academy of Music; retired in November 2019) 
  • Eva Vass (lead researcher, Western Sydney University, Australia)  
  • Tamara Farnadi (expert Kokas teacher, music educator) Béla Bartók Secondary School of Music Győr, Hungary 
  • Katalin Geréné Kristóf (Kokas teacher, music educator) Lilla tér Primary School Debrecen, Hungary
  • Katalin Körtvési (Master teacher at the Kodály Institute of the Liszt Academy of Music – Solfége, Music Theory, Basso continuo, Choral Conducting, Kokas Pedagogy, Creative Piano Pedagogy, ZeneZen) 
  • Zsuzsa Pásztor (pianist, educational psychologist, university lecturer at Eötvös Loránd University and Liszt Academy of Music) 
  • Csilla Imola Székely (studying for a PhD in Education, University of Debrecen, Hungary) 
  • Teréz Tóth (educator, freelance educational journalist) 


A selected list is available here in a pdf file.