Last November, the Hungarian Association in Cleveland, OH offered a rich cultural music experience, allowing families to reconnect with their Hungarian roots. This “Literary and Music” evening was just one event of an entire weekend of the 57th Hungarian Congress organized by Hungarian Association. The whole weekend program involved lectures, films, games, exhibits, book sales, a gala ball, a youth art competition, a distinguished guest luncheon speaker and this Literary Evening.
The “Literary and Music” evening included performances by Eszter Völner, an outstanding soprano from Budapest, who showcased the evening with renditions of folk songs collected by Zoltán Kodály and by Pongrác Kacsóh. She was accompanied by Zsuzsánna Balla, a pianist from Transylvania and Detroit, who also played Kodály, Liszt and Bartók pieces.
Finally, commemorating the anniversary of the Hungarian Poet Arany János, Professor Péter Hargitai recited the famous poem “The Bards of Wales.” Continuing in the spirit of poetry, Following, Professor Hargitai, youth from both Cleveland (Jazmin Dunay and Hunor Zsuzsa) and Detroit (Éva Ilona Fazekas and Péter Matyás Fazekas) also presented poetry recitals.
“Eszter Völner’s soprano voice, her youth and passion were unmistakable. Many of the 20-40 age group of our audience were especially impressed with the dramatic rendition of the “The Bards of Wales.” Professor Hargitai’s character and pose were awe demanding. This evening of music and poetry has become a Cleveland tradition appealing to audience members from all age groups.” Gabriella Nádas, Hungarian Association
The evening was rounded out by a reception and an art exhibit by young Hungarian-American artists participating in the Ladanyi Art competition. Performers from the Literary and Art evening also conducted an interactive workshop for children on Saturday afternoon, including, music, dance and crafts.
“This was a sophisticated cultural program offering quality music immersion and poetry recital. The fact that 4 young Hungarian school students were included in the program, reciting Hungarian poems added inspiration for them and offered a chance for the community to show their appreciation. We strive to offer different students a chance to perform.” Gabriella Nádas